Monday, July 15, 2013

The Undefined Gamer (and Cinema Won) Review "Serenity"

You can't take the sky from me...

      Joss Whedon is the old Steven Moffat, or Steven Moffat is the new
Joss Whedon. Confused? I'll give you a hint: both love to destroy all
you have dear.
      I have just finished the only season of Firefly. To say it was
fantastic is an understatement. So naturally, I gobbled up Serenity,
Universal's feature film based on the series.
      It has been months since the events of Firefly. Shepard eventually
would join Inara in the Intentionally-Left-The-Serenity Club (its
remarkably small!), as Simon (Sean Maher), is arguing with Captain Mal
(Nathan Fillion) about him Mal intends to bring his sister, River
(Summer Glau) on a heist. Tensions have run high since Shepard last
lived on the Serenity, as the whole
vibe has run dry. Mal and Jayne have reverted back to
abandoning-River-and-Simon mode (despite the fact that he stated many
a time in the show that they where "his crew"). I guess those months
without Inara and Shepard really... really.... sucked.
      At the heist, Reevers (People who supposedly went mad out of
loneliness), show up, and Mal and Company barely escape, thanks to

Mmm, widescreen digital...
      Meanwhile, the Alliance is still hunting for River and Simon.
Apparently River, being psychic, overheard something she wasn't
supposed to, and as this movie needs an evil villain, Enter Alliance
      The rest of the movie centers around this determined Agent's quest
to apprehend River, while the Serenity's crew inadvertently discover
the secret that the Alliance had been chasing River for: that the
Alliance was responsible for the Reevers, and all these people who
where after River had been part of one big cover-up. The rest of the
movie follows Captain Mal's desperate mission to spread the truth to
every planet in the Alliance, a quest that would cost him two
crew members.
      The action and CGI is spectacular. Everything is very well made and
looks like it had a budget north of $100 million (which it... did
not). The action and sheer scale of Serenity eclipses all of Firefly''s
sequences tenfold, providing much contrast between the series and the
      The movie seems so much more different than the show, but that's not
necessarily a bad thing. Serenity is a sad, action-packed movie,
whereas Firefly was an almost uplifting, well-written show. Lots of
bitterness ensued  between the crew between Firefly and Serenity, and
clearly bonds have been tested. I don't know if its the gap in between
production or the change in company's, but the show and movie have
totally different feels to them. The only thing that was in the show
that I'd wished transitioned to the movie is the humor (which was
Jayne's specialty).
      Serenity makes up for the lack of humor with its tragedy. Like Steven
Moffat of Doctor Who and Sherlock after him, Whedon saw Serenity as a
chance to stick a blade into your heart and twist it. Killing off two
major characters, Shepard and Wash, in a series where no crew member
has yet died, thus becomes a genuine shock. Wash's character in
particular, renown for his ironic personalty, seemed almost
untouchable. Well, until Whedon got ahold of him with his filthy mits
and drove a spike into his chest.

Nice glasses.
      Serenity may be very different to Firefly, but it is in no way
inferior to the show. Whedon makes use of a noticeably larger budget
to craft a tragic tale that any fan of the show would love, or even
just movie fans in general. Whedon not only develops the Reevers as
beings capable of competing with the Borg, but also crafts a movie
that will stand the test of time, that'll be enjoyed by many future

Serenity gets 6 stars out of 6.

Cinema Won Corner:

      I figured I'd quickly throw my 2 cents into the ring as to what I felt
about Serenity. It's... alright. I absolutely love Firefly, as it is one of the
modern nerd commandments. But, the movie is just so... there. There's a lot 
going on and it just feels rushed, which it was seeing as how Whedon was
basically packing the furute 5 seasons of Firefly into one 2-hour movie. As a
result, a lot of interesting ideas aren't really fleshed out well and the deaths just
feel like they're there for a shock, especially Wash's. It's still entertaining, though
the humor is sorely missed and overall it is a good film. Just nowhere near as good
as the show. Serenity gets 5 stars out of 6.

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