Tuesday, February 26, 2008
I'm going to make a big call here... Hayden Christensen is a crap actor. Somewhat pretty (there's a whole attractive nipple thing that I'm not going into right now)... but just crap...
Not only has that opinion been reinforced over the last week or so while I watched the second and third Star Wars movies, but also by tonight's movie choice, Jumper.
Actually maybe it's not "crap" so much as it is one dimensional... he's not much of anything really...
And it was doubly obvious once Jamie Bell appears on screen... he was acting rings around Hayden without really even seeming to try. And between what I assume is his authentic English accent, the bad attitude, and the scruffy hair and stubble thing, not to mention the scars the makeup department gave him (what can I say, it's a weird turn on) he was really all I wanted to look at when he was on screen.
Samuel L. Jackson spends the movie with large chunks of the scenery caught in his teeth (you know, from all the chewing of scenery he does)... he's somewhere between his usual larger than life kind of character and really seriously overacting. Plus the whole white hair look they gave him was a little bit much. He does seem to be enjoying himself though, which is the main thing.
I can't say very much about the female lead, Rachel Bilson... I mean, she was on the OC... so that says it all really. She's not especially one thing or another... possibly she's the female equivalent of Hayden, not so much crap as just mostly vanilla.
Their best scene together is actually the one love/sex scene, which doesn't really go very far, but it looks like the director just got them to play around and concentrate on the moment rather than trying to act... and it's actually a good scene... rather than being staged and artful and beautiful, it's like real sex, fumbling, slightly disorganised and with the potential to be slightly amusing.
Overall the movie has a good concept... boy discovers the ability to teleport, hijinks ensue, bad guy tries to kill grown up boy, slightly more dangerous hijinks ensue... but somehow it all falls a bit flat in the end. Really, really flat to be honest... actually, the last scene in the movie just kills whatever might have been half decent before that... the credits start to roll and you're just left going "Okaaaaaaaay... is that it?". Disappointing really.
The whole story really could have done with being strengthened up... they don't really dig too deeply into whys and wherefores... just enough to let you go "ahh, okay, so that's why Sam is chasing them"... but it kinda felt like they were hoping they would get a second movie to delve deeper into the background and stuff, so they didn't bother putting too much detail in this time around. Big mistake on their part I think...
The action sequences are pretty good, and the teleporting does add a new and interesting element, although they do seem to suffer from Bourne Syndrome just a bit... too much overly fast editing combined with shakey camera work (and just as a side note, what moron decided that The Bourne Ultimatium should win the Oscar for Best Editing?). Not enough to generate nausea, but enough to be slightly annoying in spots.
The "jumping" visual effects are pretty good, but there is some occasionally questionable greenscreen work (as in it's obvious that the character is standing in front of a fake background), but my ongoing pickiness with special effects should be taken into account, and "normal people" might not even notice.
It's not completely horrible, but the end is really, really disappointing...
yani's rating: 6 crazed paladins out of 10