Sunday, August 26, 2007

Reviews from the 'Boro (Volume 5)

Orson Scott Card has taken yet another vacation from the world of film criticism to do a well-written essay on forgiveness . Fortunately, Yes!Weekly's Glen Baity managed to stay on top of his movie reviewing game. That's not saying much since I can only think of maybe three or four weeks where he coulnd't do a review for whatever reason, but anyway, Baity's review of The Invasion is probably one of the best that he's ever written.

Here's an excerpt:


Despite a perfectly okay plot and a decent first half, the film goes sour as it nears its conclusion. This happens for a lot of reasons, but the biggest is its staggering pretension. After the studio saw original director Oliver Hirschbiegel's first cut, they ordered rewrites by the gifted, if sometimes unforgivably haughty, Wachowski brothers. I'm not sure what the film was like before they climbed on board, but The Invasion touts a prevailing theme that, conspicuously, is a Wachowski favorite: human nature, the subjugation of which naturally leads to world peace. Humans, as we're helpfully informed during one of many weirdly preachy tangents, are naturally violent and destructive. To be without violence and conflict, therefore, is to be without humanity itself.

Of course, a great deal of science fiction is really about some real-world social ill, but that all falls apart if the metaphor becomes too obvious, as it does here. The Invasion is replete with cardboard characters flogging the dead horse of free will in as unsubtle a way as possible. After three Matrix movies riding shotgun with motor-mouthed Morpheus on the way to Zion, I don't think I'm alone in saying: Thanks, Wachowskis, but no thanks.

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