Serenity: Let me down easy

[Screenshot]I really wished I could like this one, and at the same time knew it couldn’t possibly match my expectations. What can you possibly put into a movie based on a series whose cancellation left far too many cliffhangers and still satisfy everyone? Weirdly, Serenity seems to have taken the worst possible route, in some ways, as it didn’t explain much of the actual mysteries of the series and still manages to feel rushed. Part of what is not explained is the relentlessness and the purpose of the blue-handed doctors (we get a first-order approximation via the Operative, but why not tie it into something familiar?) or Shepherd Book’s extraordinary privilege with the Alliance (hinted at in the a couple of episodes, and completely discarded in the film). The one mystery we do get fully explained is not one which was a burning mystery in-story. It didn’t texturally feel like the series, either, and didn’t really seem to give the actors much of a chance to play within their roles—hell, two of the characters barely appear in the film, and a “Mr. Universe” whom the crew presumably knows but who never appeared until he was convenient materializes. Most of the appeal of the series, to me, is in the character interplay, and none of the characters really seem to have come through in Serenity. In the end, it comes out to be a fun action movie featuring characters I’ve seen before, but, y’know, for my 2 hours, I’d rather watch two episodes of the original series, where we get to see everybody at their best. Maybe “Shindig” and “Ariel”. Those two were awesome.

See also: IMDB, Wikipedia.

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About Jake
I'm a mathematics professor at the University of Louisville, and a geek.

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