HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Goosebumps 2: Haunted Halloween
Last Picture Show, The
Pathfinder
Skatetown, USA
Donbass
He Loves Me... He Loves Me Not
Mary Poppins Returns
Beyond the Sky
Sorry to Bother You
Last Days, The
Man Who Killed Hitler and Then The Bigfoot, The
Being Frank: The Chris Sievey Story
Once Upon a Time in London
King Lear
Under the Silver Lake
Satan's Mistress
Border
Lemonade Joe
Earth Maiden Arjuna
Sons of Katie Elder, The
Soldier, The
Mr. Topaze
Aquaman
One, Two, Three
Bad Times at the El Royale
Caretaker, The
Old Man and the Gun, The
Song of Bernadette, The
Creed II
Anna and the Apocalypse
Return of the Hero
White Reindeer, The
Lizzie
Wicked, Wicked
Faces Places
Strange Woman, The
Ralph Breaks the Internet
Sky Bandits
Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Devil's Sword, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Monster Dog: Cujo on Blu-ray
For Christ's Sake: Jesus Christ Superstar and The Last Temptation of Christ
Not In Front of the Children: Inappropriate Kids Movies
Deeper into Ozploitation: Next of Kin and Fair Game
Between the Wars: Babylon Berlin Series 1&2 on DVD
Hard Luck Story: Detour on Blu-ray
Oh, What Happened to You? The Likely Lads on Blu-ray
Killer Apps: The Rise of the Evil 60s Supercomputers
How 1970s Can You Get? Cliff Richard in Take Me High vs Never Too Young to Rock
A Perfect Engine, An Eating Machine: The Jaws Series
Phwoar, Missus! Sexytime for Hollywood
He-Maniacs: Ridiculous 80s Action
All's Welles That Ends Welles: Orson Welles Great Mysteries Volume 1 on DVD
Shut It! The Sweeney Double Bill: Two Blu-rays from Network
Network Sitcom Movie Double Bill: Till Death Us Do Part and Man About the House on Blu-ray
   
 
  Thunderbirds No GoBuy this film here.
Year: 2004
Director: Jonathan Frakes
Stars: Bill Paxton, Ben Kingsley, Sophia Myles, Anthony Edwards, Brady Corbet, Soren Fulton, Vanessa Anne Hudgens, Ron Cook, Rose Keegan, Deobia Oparei, Philip Winchester, Dominic Colenso, Ben Torgersen, Lex Shrapnel, Bhasker Patel, Debora Weston, Lou Hirsch
Genre: Action, Science Fiction, Adventure
Rating:  4 (from 1 vote)
Review: International Rescue are heroes to planet Earth, always intervening in major acccidents to save the unfortunate in their state-of-the-art vehicles, known as Thunderbirds. Very few are aware of the identities of the men behind the rescuers, but they are in fact the Tracy family headed by billionaire ex-astronaut Jeff (Bill Paxton). His sons pilot the vehicles and save lives, yet Alan (Brady Corbet), the youngest, is frustrated that he has to stay in school while his family go off on adventures that he is reduced to watching on the television news. However, the machinations of The Hood (Ben Kingsley) will change all that...

The live action version of Gerry and Sylvia Anderson's classic puppet series of the sixties was much anticipated, in Britain anyway, until people actually saw it and it turned into one of the most notable flops of 2004. Had the filmmakers misjudged their audience so badly? This Thunderbirds acts as a kind of prequel to introduce Alan into the team and was pitched at a much younger audience than even the original had been, with the kids as the heroes saving the adults. And even then, the expected rescue action was reduced to a brief sequence at the beginning and the finale.

Most of the action took place on Tracy Island, the South Pacific paradise that was the family's home which The Hood infiltrates. He manages to trap Jeff and all his sons on the space station Thunderbird 5 - all his sons except Alan, that is, who along with fellow youngsters Fermat (Soren Fulton) and Tintin (Vanessa Anne Hudgens) are our best hope for foiling The Hood's schemes to frame the Thunderbirds for a daring series of bank robberies. Not only that, but he wants to use the actual Thunderbird vehicles so there will be no question in the public's mind as to the supposed culprits' identities.

Anthony Edwards is Brains, egghead father of Fermat, but ineffectual and even performing puppet moves under the villain's mind control as an in-joke as awkward as the rest of the story. Yet the real heroine is Lady Penelope, with Sophia Myles stealing the show as the special agent kitted out in pink and accompanied by her chauffeur and right hand man Parker (Ron Cook). Whenever these two are onscreen, there's a sense of what might have been if the producers had had more faith in the format as it was, and not as an updated version that never makes up its mind as to whether it's a tribute or a "re-imagining".

Fortunately the special effects do the vehicles justice, but make the production even more like an advertisement for a toy range than the sixties programme ever did. Most of the characters in that had American accents, but Thunderbirds was proudly British, here the project doesn't appear sure of where it's targetted or where it's coming from. This time the Tracy Brothers, Alan apart, are totally interchangeable registering no personalities whatsoever, and Paxton's Jeff is a paternal cliché, scolding Alan and then accepting him by the end in an achingly predictable narrative. You could excuse this by saying it was simply for the kiddies, but so was the original and that has appeal that has lasted generations. A Lady Penelope spin-off might have been fun, though. Music by Hans Zimmer (the classic theme creator Barry Gray barely merits a mention here).
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 3955 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (1)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star do you think makes the best coffee?
Emma Stone
Anna Kendrick
Michelle Rodriguez
Sir Patrick Stewart
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Andrew Pragasam
Enoch Sneed
Paul Shrimpton
Darren Jones
George White
Stately Wayne Manor
Paul Smith
   

 

Last Updated: