JT Film Review

30 – Serenity (2005)

Serenity REVIEW

4/5 stars

Director – Joss Whedon

Cast – Nathan Fillion, Gina Torres, Alan Tudyk, Morena Baccarin, Adam Baldwin, Jewel Staite, Sean Maher, Summer Glau, Ron Glass, Chiwetel Ejiofor, David Krumholtz

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— follows Firefly (TV Series)

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SER_1-ShtThe TV show “Firefly” is the very definition of a science fiction cult classic. It’s fans are at least as enthusiastic as those of the original “Star Trek” series, so when it was cancelled there was quite an uproar in certain circles. Fans fought long and hard to get the networks to renew the series, and while that never happened, Universal decided to finance a movie version of the show. Serenity is the result, and for the most part it lives up to the shows reputation. It certainly features wit, danger, action and intrigue in equal measures as the show. The main characters are all back (though some have a bit less screen time than others, to be sure.)

The only problem with this movie movie is the story. We are not really presented with anything we haven’t seen before in that regard. It does, however, touch on some pretty interesting topics, and I suspect will be good for a couple repeat viewings. There are some excellent action scenes, and one scene in particular (a space battle of sorts) had me thinking back to the epic full scale chaotic space confrontations seen in the Star Wars Saga. It was a serenity_movie_image__6_great sequence. The actors are obviously at home with each other and their roles, and they play off each other wonderfully. It makes you wish that the show could have continued… but, c’est la vie. On that note, I must say a couple character decisions surprised me, I can’t say much more without going into Spoiler-land, but some characters were dealt in very unexpected ways. That kept the movie somewhat fresh, which is of course, good.

The “bad guy” is played by Chiwetel Ejiofor, a criminally under-rated actor.serenity005SNT_Chiwetel_Ejiofor_008 His other appearances include the amazing film Children of Men, and the satisfying British rom- com-drama (is that a term?) Love Actually. I can’t wait to see this guy in more projects. Here he ignores the stereotype villian delivery, and goes for an approach more in line with the view that the character is just a guy doing his job. And he happens to be frickin’ good at it.

OVERALL

Serenity is a decent sci-fi film, and one of the better movies made from a TV show. The action is well done, and the trademark wit of Joss Whedon is certainly there. The story, however, doesn’t drag you in as much as it could. The people most likely to appreciate this film are viewers of the “Firefly” TV show. As I have seen the show, I like it. Others may want to familiarize themselves with the show first.

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TRAILER

“Serenity” on other websites:

IMDB —– Rotten Tomatoes —– Wikipedia

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July 24, 2009 - Posted by | 4 Stars, Film Review, Genre - Sci-fi, Year - 2000-2009 | , , , ,

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