HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Tyger Tyger
Filmmaker's House, The
Man Standing Next, The
Rock, Paper and Scissors
Batman: The Long Halloween Part One
Salaam Bombay!
Boss Level
My Heart Can't Beat Unless You Tell It To
Edge of the World
PTU
Superdeep
Insignificance
Treasure City
Piccadilly
Parallel
Invasión
Shiva Baby
Flowers of Shanghai
War and Peace
Agony
Merrily We Go to Hell
Ellie & Abbie (& Ellie's Dead Aunt)
Amusement Park, The
Lemebel
Hands of Orlac, The
Cats
Death has Blue Eyes
Caveat
Kala Azar
Duplicate
Flashback
Gunda
After Love
Earwig and the Witch
Zebra Girl
Skull: The Mask
Vanquish
Bank Job
Drunk Bus
Homewrecker
   
 
Newest Articles
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
   
 
  Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within Save The Green Planet
Year: 2001
Director: Hironobu Sakaguchi, Moto Sakakibara
Stars: Ming-Na, Alec Baldwin, Ving Rhames, Steve Buscemi, Peri Gilpin, Donald Sutherland, James Woods, Keith David, Jean Simmons, Matt McKenzie, Dwight Schultz
Genre: Animated, Science FictionBuy from Amazon
Rating:  5 (from 3 votes)
Review: The year is 2065, thirty-four years after a calamity that wiped out much of humanity from Planet Earth and left the surface desolate and populated with strange "phantoms" which scoop the lifeforce out of any human they touch. One of the survivors is Dr. Aki Ross (voiced by Ming-Na), who has been studying the world from her vantage point in an orbiting spacecraft; she experiences vivid dreams which she believes constitute a message from some kind of Earth spirit she calls Gaia. Now she must embark on a mission to rid the planet of phantoms once and for all...

Before this movie instalment of the Final Fantasy computer game series was released, there was a buzz about it rumouring that this would revolutionise the scope of filmmaking forever: if you believed the hype, there would from now on be computer generated characters in films interacting with actual actors and actresses utterly indistinguishable from the real thing. That's how convincing it was going to be folks, and then we got to see the production, whereupon anyone who thought that the stiffly moving figures with the robotic appearance exhibited here were totally lifelike would have been seriously deluded.

Still, there are filmmakers who endeavour to create the better than life human image, and although this film was a flop, every so often there is another film that purports to offer real-looking people fashioned with computers, and they never quite make the grade as what we have been promised. The reason for this is curious, especially when there are plenty of perfectly capable performers who have not been designed on machines, and the fact that nothing in the field has really gone better than Jar Jar Binks (whether that's a good thing or not is a matter of personal opinion). Still, Final Fantasy, created by one of the game's original team Hironobu Sakaguchi, did look as if a lot of work had gone into it.

It's just that none of the work seems to have gone on the elements that make for entertaining motion pictures. You could forgive the unnatural-looking characters, yet the dialogue is one cliché after another, so much so that you can pretty much guess what they're going to say before they've spoken, and the visuals lean far too heavily on industrial gloom for too much of the time to be particularly entrancing. Join that to a plot which opts for vague spirituality in place of concrete twists and themes, and you can see why this did not take off with the public - if only someone had pointed the flaws out to them while they were in production.

Obviously, the makers were doing their best with the realistic movement, but it appears that they were concentrating so much on getting every hair on Aki's head to move naturally that they forgot that she should not have the lack of personality of the typical action figure. But this is a problem that often arises when dealing with so much high technology in the manufacture of movies, so it's not as if the Final Fantasy creators were alone in their difficulties. A sense of humour might have helped, but having Steve Buscemi fire off a few lame wisecracks is about as good (or bad) as it gets, and otherwise this takes itself painfully solemnly, leaving a sense of indifference to its earnest plodding. Intermittently there will be a striking image that means this is not a dead loss, but boredom is the most likely feeling the majority of viewers will take away. Music by Elliot Goldenthal.
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 4029 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 probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: