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Monday, March 13, 2006

Ultramediocre

I went to see Ultraviolet this weekend. I know, I know, not the best choice, but the director of the film is the same man who did one of my favorite movies Equilibrium and I couldn't help but be hopeful. Plus I'm a fan of "cool" looking films as long as they amuse me. So I saw a matinee and I was, well, underwhelmed. It wasn't awful, I just didn't care that much. I was in a "state of ungrippedness", as Lister would say. The character of Violet and a memorable chase scene involving an antigrav motorbike and a costume/hair that would chameleon to it's surroundings was about the highlight of the show. I mean cool sets and all, but the fighting (endless) and story were not as "cool" as I expected. Very mediocre...like they spent way too much money on something that really didn't need to be made...it's all been done before (except the motorbike thing) and done better. Even Equilibrium was infinitely superior.
What do I like? Well, last night I watched Ong Bak and thought "THAT'S fighting". Ultraviolet was a lot of fast cuts, stupid henchman being cut down and an overall lack of tension. No real skill or emotion or impressiveness. Even what could have been a rather cool fight scene at the end of the film was just ho hum, which is too bad. Usually I'm all for a movie that is cool enough to entertain even if the story lacks a bit (like, say, "Underworld"), but this really was boring for me overall. I so wanted the director to do well, so he could give me more Equilibriums...

On the OTHER hand, I rented a movie called Mirror Mask on Friday night and was infinitely more impressed with it. It had the help of Henson's creature shop. Basically. it's all about a girl's drawings coming to life in her dreams as she struggles to find the mirror mask to return back to "her" world. Visually impressive, interesting characters and really entertaining and thoughtful. Everything that Ultraviolet was NOT. Do rent this film AND Equilibrium if you haven't had the chance to see either of them. I'd go into the films more but I have a nasty habit of accidentally letting major plot points slip so I'll just stand on my recommendation to see those movies and to not bother with Ultraviolet. Even on a cheap night it's honestly not worth it. Just not good enough eye candy.
Now I just have to rent Howl's Moving Castle...and Casshern.

1 comments:

magnus said...

Um, does Ultraviolet have any plot points worth protecting? My soapbox is primed so let me implore you all - stop seeing garbage films! Tired of of the film industries love affair with the lack-lustre? Want better quality? Support quality films! Rent the garbage or (better yet) pirate the garbage and view it at home. Go to the theatres to see the films that are worthwhile shelling out the dough for.
One of the worst films I have ever seen was called "Crimson Rivers" stariing Jean Reno and Vincent Cassel and directed by Mathieu Kassovitz. (whom I thought was great as Nino in Amelie and as Robert, the bomb maker, in Munich)
I just remember thinking it tried too hard, style over substance, convoluted, etc. But I see people on imdb.com really love the film and one guy at a local video store says it is one of the foreign films that rents the most at his store. I saw this one on a free pass and still didn't like it. Wasted talents all the way around.
Kassovitz should maybe stick to acting, his other major directing effort was Gothika. I haven't seen any of his other efforts but hopefully they stand up better than these two examples.