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Jupiter Ascending (A Movie Review)

Updated: Apr 15, 2020

Jupiter Ascending

Jupiter Ascending


Starring  Mila Kunis, Channing Tatum, Eddie Redmayne,Douglas Booth, Sean Bean, Tuppence Middleton, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Doona Bae, David Ajala, Nikki Amuka-Bird, Charlotte Beaumont, Vanessa Kirby, Christina Cole, Nicholas A. Newman, Ramon Tikaram, Ariyon Bakare, Maria Doyle Kennedy, Frog Stone, Samuel Barnett, James D’Arcy and Terry Gilliam.

Screenplay by Lana Wachowski & Andy Wachowski.

Directed by Lana Wachowski & Andy Wachowski.

Distributed by Warner Bros.  127 minutes. Rated R.

With the semi-recent obsession that the vast majority of people have with science fiction, dystopia and super heroes, Jupiter Ascending seems like just another visually stimulating movie where someone unlikely saves the world.

And, in truth it is. Except that in this case, the movie isn’t well done.

Throughout the movie it seems as if the writers were so eager to jump on the bandwagon, that they forgot to explain the basic plot line of the story. Instead, the movie is overloaded with effects that cloud the purpose.

There are many intricate details and relationships that are barely touched on or completely skipped over. By the time you’ve reached the movie climax, you know little more about what is going on than you did at the beginning.

While most of Jupiter Ascending’s plot was frankly absent, it did have some highlights. It seems most of the budget and time spent on the movie went into special effects and stunts, even causing a push back of the release date so more could be added.

This did pay off in the end, even though the movie didn’t make sense, it was very interesting visually.

Jupiter Ascending is supposed to be about how Jupiter Jones (a cleaning lady stuck in a dead end life looking for excitement) and Caine Wise (Jones’ main love interest, also part wolf man) save the Earth from the evil people ruling the galaxy. However, it really ends up being about seeing Mila Kunis and Channing Tatum jump and fly about in an impressively designed virtually created space.

(Weird trivia fact: The oddball character name of Jupiter Jones was actually used before as the leader of a group of boy detectives in the old children’s book series Alfred Hitchcock & the Three Investigators. Coincidence?)

A hand goes out to the costume designer in the film whose gorgeous gowns and intricate costumes were the biggest highlight of this movie.

Another issue with the movie came from it’s lack of character development. Caine and Jupiter are supposed to have this epic love story. He helps her save the world. She helps him feel like a real person.

Kunis and Tatum show incredibly little chemistry, making the connection between their characters seem unrealistic and almost laughable. Another weak performance came from the recently Oscar-nominated Eddie Redmayne — who in an effort to sound menacing, whispers almost all of his lines, making an utterly confusing movie even more difficult to grasp.

It seems as though the directors (The Wachowskis who are well known for their work on The Matrix) were overly ambitious in taking on this project. It needed a ton of work and even more developing to be successful.

Perhaps with a different cast, a lot more plot focus, and a little less distracting effects, Jupiter Ascending could have been a strong film, but currently, it just isn’t.

Ally Abramson

Copyright ©2015 All rights reserved. Posted: February 16, 2015.

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