Tuesday, September 27, 2005
Friday Movie Review (early)
Best of the new stuff was Chiwetel Ejiofor (I'm not making that up) who was so good in Dirty Pretty Things and briefly in Love Actually (both fine movies). He plays the unnamed "operative" for the Alliance and was an honorable and worthy foe (as all good screen villains are wont to be).
The best thing from the old show remains the Reivers, except now we know where the Reivers came from. Nihil ex nihilo I always say. The explanation is part of the brilliant writing that makes the plot device of government wickedness integral to the themes developed back during the TV show. Why do they want the girl so? Who are these Reiver guys and what makes them so monstrous? All answered. And you have to admire a movie that will kill off some of the regulars and make it look like they're all going down.
Some missteps were River Tam (played by Summer Glau) as a kung fu maven. I know getting kicked by a 90 pound girl might well hurt, but I doubt one could take me out. I love David Krumholtz (just for "Luck be a Lady Tonight" in the Slums of Beverly Hills) but his character, Mr. Universe, was slim to non-existent (even though he is an important plot advancer). Loved the love robot. Ron Glass played such a small role that he was barely even there.
The canon they used to lure in the Reivers was a German 20mm (probably the same one used in Saving Private Ryan). It's tough to tell what the small arms are because they just glue doodads on late 20th Century guns. Captain Mal carries what looks like an M-16 with the air cool cowling from an M1919A4 (Browning .30). Jayne carries an HK 41 but it's hard to tell with all the junk crammed on. They even put a scope on Zoe's pump shotgun. What's that about?
The movie takes a bit to set up and get going but, after the trip to Miranda, it revs up and kicks into a rollicking overdrive. I have not had this much fun at the movies since back when the Star Wars and Indiana Jones series were good.