Anyone who knows me personally knows I'm big into animated films especially the one's in 2D. Let's face it, when it comes down to it, the current 3D films we have today can't beat those classic films such as "Beauty and the Beast," "The Lion King," "Akira," "Aladdin," "The Iron Giant," "Titan A.E.," "Princess Mononoke" and many many more. Think about scenes like the one from "The Lion King" where you had that massive stampede that killed Simba's father. That was all drawn by hand! Can you imagine the amount of work and effort that went into making that one scene alone? Incredible! But with that said, even though I don't prefer 3D animation to the classic 2D I still cant help but be impressed by some of the lavishing and colorful world's these animators are able to produce on their computers. "Wall-E" is quite possible my favorite animated film of all time and it's not even 2D. That's saying something! Despite the fact that 2D films are becoming a rarity, I'm happy with the current surge of 3D films and I think this year, 2009 is going to be a great year for them! So for every 3D animated film that comes out this year I will be posting my own little review of them, or at least the one's I hear about the most and am capable of seeing. So I think I'll start off by telling you what I think about the latest one to come out, "Battle For Terra," which premiered yesterday.
The movie kicks off with a human space ship that's been traveling through the cosmos for generations looking for a new planet to settle on, since earth was destroyed by a civil war between them and the neighboring terraformed planets (Did I spell terraformed right?). In their journey they come across a planet, which they've named Terra, which is inhabited by these floating, almost mermaid like aliens, who've established a civilization that celebrates both peace and life. Though the atmosphere is un-breathable to humans, they have a way to filter it so it is breathable, but at the cost of the Terrians, who are unable to breathe oxygen. The movie starts out with the human ship blocking out the sun of the planet and automatically the Terrians think it's some new god for them to worship. A human survey squad is sent to the planet to abduct the native Terrians for further study, and them being the overly superstitious and naive species that they are they think that the humans are gathering them up to take them to some sort of afterlife where they can be with this new god. One of the human ships crashes and the pilot, Jim Stanton, is rescued by one of the Terrians named Mala, who builds a primitive oxygen chamber for him, and with the help of his robot she learns his language and asks him if he'll take her to her father, who was one of the Terrians that was abducted.
From there you get a sense of how long the humans have been flying around in space, and how desperate they are to find a new home, that they'll do anything, including genocide to have one.
The movie eventually leads to a big Arial battle between the two species, and without giving too much away, all I can say is, it was EPIC!!! Far superior to any space battle I've seen so far save for the final battle in "Star Wars: Return of the Jedi."
MY THOUGHTS: The Pros and Cons
Over all I enjoyed the movie. It's a fun sci-fi action flick that can be enjoyed by both kids and adults, that's not too violent that you couldn't take your kids to see it if you're a parent, but violent enough that it's not too cartoony, so it will keep mature audiences entertained. Some of the animation is a little poor (Particulary with the Terrians, and some of the human scenes), where they are either moving to slow or it just doesn’t seem natural enough, but overall it was a beautiful film to look at and it's worth catching in a theater just for that final spaceship battle at the end. The story was pretty good but it's one that I've seen before only this time it was reversed to make the humans look like the bad guys, which I have to say didn't make it all that special. I felt the film itself was too short leaving no room for character or plot development. Because of this I felt they could of told a much better more detailed story if they tacked on an extra 20 or 30 minutes to the film, (hopefully there will be a directors cut, though I doubt it). The 3D was decent but it could've been better. I'd figure a movie about space battles with a bunch of ships and rockets flying at your face would have some pretty awesome 3D effects but I was 'meh' about it and it didn't really enhance the experience at all.
I enjoyed this movie. Is it something I'll want to see again in a theater? No, definitely not, but when it comes out on DVD I'll see it again, maybe even buy it. It's a fun ride, with some cool battles and 3D animation, and what it lacks in story and character development, it makes up for in awesomeness. If I were to give this movie a grade, I'd say B- which is a low matinee by Spill's standards.
So there you have it that's my review of "Battle For Terra" I'll be sure to post a new one up for "UP" which comes out soon. Thanks for reading and have an AWESOME DAY!