Okay. I’m so not okay with this film. I saw the trailer and I was excited. I’ve been following Miles Teller’s body of work since 21 & Over, he so had me on board with this.
Now, my standards were low going into this film, what with it being out for over 2 weeks at this point there was no way to avoid the onslaught of reviews that have been plaguing this production. It would seem this is this year’s Godzilla.
The film is too slow. I was checking my watch (note watch, not phone. Even with this steaming turd I wasn’t going to be a hypocrite) and it was near on an hour before anyone has powers. We’d had a thorough back story for both Reed (Teller) and Ben Grimm (Jamie Bell) that has no baring on the plot.
Due to this slow burn of a plot, we don’t have a villain until the last 30 minutes and it’s wrapped up so quickly I almost wonder why they had one at all. You’ll know who it is as soon as he’s introduced. I never thought I’d say this, but the Fantastic predecessor handled the origin story much better.
The final scene; It’s cocky and it’s tacky. It assumes there will be a sequel. It’s the one thing I hate about movies; spending so much time setting up the next one, they forget that they have a current audience to win over.
Kate Mara as Sue Storm and her god awful hair. Reading up on it, it was due to a wig and reshoots. Okay, so she’d not the first to fall fowl of a hair faux pas. However, when Robin Tunney making the Craft in 1997 can do it without anyone detecting the hair on her head is not her own, why do we have such a problem in 2015? It might seem like the Jurassic World shoe-gate all over again, but this annoyed me even more. It messed with continuity; sometimes she had three different hair colours/styles in the one scene. Not cool and it is these little blips lose your audience and make them think you don’t care, or worse hints that you think they’re stupid.
Miles Teller’s Reed. This character is meant to be the leader. He’s meant to be strong; the leader. The whole film is meant to be about the four working as a team. He runs away and we are to believe he’s gone for a year without being caught. I’ll admit, it does give us a nice little view of what is possible with his power, but it doesn’t achieve anything aside from dislike my protagonist. When he does return, Reed is too quickly accepted as the leader. The breach of trust isn’t an issue apparently.
It will be interesting to see if the currently 2017 slated sequel does indeed raise its ugly head.
Absolutely Anything is Bruce Almighty without the charm. It doesn’t know its target audience; too silly for adults, too many ‘fucks’ for it to be a family friendly outing.
Simon Pegg plays Neil; hopeless English teacher given the power to do anything by Python voiced aliens. Pegg can do this role with his eyes closed; the part was made for him. However, as a romantic lead he’d already set the bar high earlier this year in Man Up. Unfortunately the romantic matchmaking doesn’t work as well here.
Some of the cast and plot work really well, particularly Eddie Izzaed and Sanjeev Bhaskar as Pegg’s boss and friend respectively. However, the crazy ex boyfriend of Beckinsale’s Catherine is an irritating sub plot I could have done without.
The late and great Robin Williams takes his swan song here as Neil’s biscuit addict dog, Denis. As always, he is a delight to have on screen. His voice alone is a great and thankful presence on screen.
The tone of the film left me thinking about Hitchiker’s and the comedic element the book and TV show both had that worked so well. With a little more time and effort, this film could have made more comparisons.
Paper Towns has an Indie, almost hipster, feel to its cinematography. There’s an attempt to achieve the gravitas of the old school coming of age films however it doesn’t quite get there. It’s plot is a little too clean, without consequence or true jeopardy and does not stand up to any scrutiny.
Margo treats her next door neighbour, Q (Nat Wolff), to a night of reckless abandon before disappearing. Q finds clues that leads to a road trip with his friends. Nat Wolff is brilliant and a sympathetic character. Margo, however is not. She appears underdeveloped and a little too mythic for an audience to believe that this boy would take this journey. In the end, you can’t help but feel cheated, even if Q doesn’t.
It is quite interesting that while the three main characters (Q, Ben and Radar. Margo doesn’t count. She’s the Chasing Amy of the film) are male, yet it still feels like a chick flick. I like the characters, I like there development, but I can’t help but see them as the boys girls want them to be and not true to life. Which is totally ironic as the book, screenplay and film are all in the creative hands of men,
However, I would love to see both Nat Wolff and Austin Abrams (Ben) take on a remake of Weekend at Bernie’s in a few years time. Or, I could simply make this the prequel head cannon to Larry and Richard’s friendship.