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Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within (DVD, 2002)
(203 Epinions reviews)
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Yawn Inducing Marvel
Jul 13, 2001 (Updated Jul 13, 2001)
Review by The_Wood
Rated a Very Helpful Review
Pros:It's pretty, teasers for Black Hawk Down and Spider Man!!!!
Cons:It knows it's pretty, and it also thinks it's smart.
The Bottom Line: Read Review
One thing can be said about Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within, and this you already know: it's a visual masterpiece. That's where my praise starts and ends. It's too bad.
Recommend this product?
For the first twenty minutes or so of the film, you'll be blown away. You might even be able to ignore the nauseating self importance that the film spews throughout the film. Unfortunately your awe will eventually end, and your stuck with a save the earth: recycle film.
The film has a wonderful cast: Alec Baldwin, Steve Buscemi, Ming-Na, Ving Rhames, Donald Sutherland, and James Woods. Sadly, the only actor who passes, and doesn't come off as being laughable, is Sutherland.
The plot of the film will have the anime fanatics drooling with wonder. They will be pondering the meaning of life in their dark basements for days after seeing the film. People who don't worship anime, will be shaking their heads with wonder.
Scary monsters, called phantoms, have taken over the earth. They have killed most of the population and taken over the cities. The earth is a barren place. What humans still live, they've come up with the plan to shoot down on the planet with a contraption called a 'zeus gun.' The good guys don't like this idea, because the earth has it's own spirit. So they've come up with the idea to collect a total of eight spirits, and this will stop the evil.
I don't mind stupid movies, but moronic movies that are trying to be brainy, well there's nothing more offensive, in my opinion. When the film isn't preaching, and boy does it ever, it steals action scenes from Cameron's Aliens and Verhoeven's Starship Troopers. Defenders of the film, will say you can't compare the films. I beg to differ. The film does have ground breaking animation, but not action scenes.
When the film doesn't have action in it, it drags. Surprisingly the film has hardly any dramatic tension in it. With the exception of Sutherland's character, I never thought that I was looking at anything other than computer graphics with voices. The realism of the film, but not quite being real, it really distracts. It's pretty yes, but I must say, I'm not a huge fan of it. Shrek was a much more pleasing film to the eyes.
I just couldn't stand how the film tried so hard to be philosophical one minute, and then tried to be an amazing action film the next. Pick one. Princess Mononoke was able to do this, it had some action, but the film wasn't schizophrenic like Final Fantasy.
Speaking of Final Fantasy, the film has nothing to do with the games. Not that anything is wrong with that, since the games are not sequels to each other, each one has their own story. The film could be called anything, Square simply put the title Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within to bring in fans of the games. If the film was a game, it would be one of the weakest in the series.
There have been two video-game movies this summer, Tomb Raider and now this. Final Fantasy is certainly the more ambitious film, but it aims too high, and ultimately fails. Tomb Raider never tried to be anything more than a dumb action flick with a cute chick. In choosing which film is better, you have the film with the photo-realistic animation, and the film with the chick with the great rack. I'll take the knockers, over the animation, any day of the week.
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