I guess I’m glad this movie exists if for no other reason than to remind me that what George Lucas accomplished with the first Star Wars is incredible. Making people care about this kind of grand, operatic, nonsensical science-fiction seems almost impossible; as if it can’t be done if that’s what you’re trying to do, it has to be stumbled upon accidentally. Everyone involved is clearly investing in this and really trying to sell it. Redmayne is having a blast and in turn I had a blast watching him. Tatum continues to be so fucking charming and watchable that I actually started to give a shit about the most convoluted character in the story. Kunis brings a great sense of humor to this and genuinely made me laugh a few times. But the movie really misses what makes a movie like this work – the “margin world-building” let’s call it. What I mean is, investing as much screen time as possible in the characters and their journey, allowing what happens in the background, what happens as a consequence of their actions, what happens in the “margins” if you will, to build the world and the universe in which their story is set. This movie spends so much time trying to explain a Dune’s worth of mythology that I never actually get invested in the character’s themselves and therefore can’t care about any of it. As a side note, the action scenes were really confusing, which was disappointing considering the directors.
Jupiter Ascending scores: ★ (out of 5)