Thursday, July 21, 2011

Popcorn and a Movie: The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008


Hey everyone, sorry for not posting on Monday. It's been a slightly crazy week, with the weather (and the internet still not working properly). Every second it's not raining it seems like my mom wants to get outside and do some project. :0) I don't blame her; we have a ton of stuff piling up on the outdoor to-do list since it's been rainy. At least it's no longer gray-the rain has made the leaves and flowers start popping (finally) and I can enjoy a good rainy day as long as there's some kind of color to look at.
Now, onto the post: a review of the new The Day the Earth Stood Still with Keanu Reeves.
Yes, this new version had cool special effects, and more mysterious "ships" than the glowing disk of the old black and white classic. However, I can safely say that it wasn't a movie I liked. I spent the entire time picking it apart. Normally I can shut my brain off the first time I watch a movie to just enjoy it (except in the case of something like Inkheart, where Dustfinger caught my attention so quickly I had a hard time focusing on the movie).
The Day the Earth Stood Still isn't my favorite old movie, but I think they ruined it the in the remake. Ending violence (naive as it may sound) was a better idea than the aliens destroying mankind because they're ruining the earth.
Seriously? They built a mvoie on that premise? Yes, seriously.
Now, do I agree that we should take care of the earth? Yes. God gave mankind the authority to rule over the earth, to dominate and take care of it but not destroy it. I really don't agree with the people who think that humans are destroying nature.
Especially aliens.
If you're going to remake a movie, make it better, not worse, than the original. Making the main character a scientist--OK, that could pass (although I liked her better as a ordinary person who didn't try to explain away everything because of science). Giving her a stepson who's a brat (and who really doesn't have a character arc) doesn't pass with me. I like the kid in the original much, much better.
I also liked the original version where Klaatu comes to earth already in human form. This new version where he comes as an alien and is "born" as a human in our world is kind of ridiculous. Plus, though it fits within his character as not caring for the humans, he hurts and kills multiple people (although he then heals them, which doesn't make sense for his character at that point in the movie). The new Klaatu does eventually stop the plan to destroy mankind (I guess at risk of his own life...) but I still like the old, peaceful Klaatu better.
Then there's Gort the robot. Pretty corny in the old one, yes. Plain ridiculous in the new one. Gort (the name is given to him by the scientists who study him...I don't remember what it means) is made up of billions of little mechanical bugs (at least I assumed they were mechanical) who's sole purpose was to destroy everything living on earth (except the animals who have already been taken away in little versions of Klaatu's spaceship).
Now, could I have enjoyed this film if I'd turned my brain off and just watched it? No. It was so in-your-face that I couldn't enjoy it. Story themes should be subtle. This was anything but.
Am I irritated I watched this movie? No. For one thing, I didn't pay to see it. For another, I enjoy every now and then watching a movie that makes me think. Do I care to watch it again? No. Do I recommend it? No.
Sorry if this seems jumpy and random. I didn't have much time to put it together. But I think you get the general idea. Keep in mind I'm not saying, "Don't watch this movie." I'm expressing my opinion of the movie. If you want to watch it, go for it! But remember to keep your brain on during this movie.

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