Movies JUPITER ASCENDING Review written by Sean Gerber February 6, 2015 The Wachowskis are back with what hopes to be another mind-bending adventure in JUPITER ASCENDING. The space fantasy puts Earth in the middle of a three-way sibling feud that threatens the lives of an unwitting young woman and her troubled protector. It is an adventure begging not to be taken seriously, but that aim often feels as though it was the only reasonable aspiration left. Jupiter Jones (Mila Kunis) is born into a life of servitude, scrubbing middle and upper class toilets for her single mother’s maid service. She, of course, dreams bigger, but soon finds grand entitlements aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Before she even knows how important she is to the fate of all mankind, aliens show up to assassinate her. Fortunately for Ms. Jones, much of what she does not understand is known by her hired, air-rollerblading protector, Caine Wise (Channing Tatum). A dazzling chase sequence, which is the true highlight of the feature, soon follows. On the run, Caine seeks help from Stinger (Sean Bean), who, with the aid of bees, helps everyone figure out exactly what the big deal is about Jupiter. This scene, like most scenes in this movie not involving spaceships or an airborne Tatum channeling Apolo Ohno, is where the seams start to rip. The dialogue lets the actors down time and again from expository ridiculousness to unearned emotional overtures that fall flat. With three sibling antagonists after Jupiter Jones for their own selfish ends, all wind up under-served by the film’s plot. A one-on-one matchup probably would have sufficed and allowed more time to develop chief villain, Balem Abrasax (Eddie Redmayne). Redmayne suffers the greatest misfortune of being left out to dry with his whispering performance rudely interrupted by unintentionally laughable outbursts not supported by the direction or the barely-there score. Through sheer will, Redmayne manages to give a glimpse of what could make him an excellent villain in a much better film someday. The love story between Kunis and Tatum is an exercise in going through motions so tedious the film doesn’t mind skipping a few. He has his shirt off for a while and she falls in love. It’s not bad or even all that unrealistic, just unmoving. One thing that can consistently be praised about the Wachowskis is their originality and some of that shines through here. The air skates, while seemingly too practical for a culture technologically advanced enough to have actual rocket boots for easier flight, look cool. There’s interesting new creatures, but some of them could have escaped from a STARGATE or BATTLESTAR GALACTICA set. If there’s a real sin here, however, it’s the Wachowski’s borrowing a bit too much from their own THE MATRIX in how its villains see and use human life. If one successfully forgets or ignores these issues, there is big screen entertainment to be found and even a few intended laughs to be had. At its best, JUPITER ASCENDING is an amusing ride even if it feels like the consolation prize settled on when greater goals were revealed to be out of reach. JUPITER ASCENDING Review was last modified: February 21st, 2016 by Sean Gerber Related Jupiter Ascending 3 comments 0 Facebook Twitter Google + Pinterest Sean Gerber Sean Gerber is the founder and editor-in-chief of Modern Myth Media. When he's not writing here, you can catch him as the host of Popular Opinion Podcast, Batman News, and Marvel News! previous post Pratt And Evans Make Good On Super Bowl Bet next post Hot Toys Unveils Artist Mix Collection From AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON You may also like Open Forum: BLACKHAT January 15, 2015 Bruce Willis Out, Harrison Ford In For... August 6, 2013 Open Forum: EX MACHINA April 10, 2015 Open Forum: TIME LAPSE May 15, 2015 Second GODZILLA Trailer Asserts Nature’s Dominance February 26, 2014 Open Forum: TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES (2014) August 13, 2014 TMNT Trailer Touts Turtle Power March 27, 2014 Review: SNOWPIERCER June 22, 2014 JURASSIC WORLD: Meet Indominus Rex January 29, 2015 SNOWPIERCER Expands July 3, 2014 Adrian Edmondson Nice review . Still redboxing this stock Very good review, Sean. I liked the way you turn a phrase. Told me everything I needed to know. I admit, I didn’t have a lot of hope for this flick, but I was interested. Looks like it may be a modern version of Dune, at least in the execution. A big budget disaster. But even those have something worthwhile sometimes. Kerry Vanderberg So I take you don’t agree with Mark Hughes’ review on it?