Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Jumping Jupiter

I can certainly understand why Jupiter Ascending (2015) gets slammed so bad, but I don't care. I was looking for cosmic space opera with wild visuals, and I got it.

It stars Mila Kunis as Jupiter Jones, an alien - the undocumented kind, from Russia. She lives in Chicago with her widowed mother and extended family, and makes a living cleaning houses with the rest of the women in the clan. But we know there is a bigger universe for her to discover. We meet odd effete nobles on ravaged worlds, and some unsavory bounty hunters on Earth - bounty hunters looking for Jupiter.

It seems that human beings exist on many planets, with the richest families living for millenia and owning - and harvesting - planets. And they want Jupiter. I'll skip the spoilers, partly because they make so little sense. But I will let you know that one of the bounty hunters, played by Channing Tatum, is a gene-modified human with some canine added. Yes, her love interest is a werewolf. And Jupiter has to wonder how those rich families live so long. Are they vampires?

But space werewolves and vampires (not to mention dark angels) are beside the point. The point is amazing chases with Tatum on antigrav space boots, Doona Bae on her space scooter, exploding buildings, space cathedrals, last-minute hairs-breadth rescues, etc. My only complaint was that they tended to drag on a bit, and that they were often cool for cool's sake - no development within the action. But they looked great - come on, it was directed by the Wachowskis!

Ok, maybe my other complaint is that Kunis' role is so passive - she barely gets a wisecrack in. And aren't we a little past the old secret princess plot? Come to think of it, the whole plot is pretty weak, but I think I already said it doesn't make any sense. It looks great and it's fun. It has a sense of wonder and a sense of humor - ok, not as good as Gaurdians of the Galaxy, but I'll take it.

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