The first 30 minutes of this movie are amazing. I mean the set up is great and the concepts are wonderful, there’s this world at the start of this movie that looked straight outta Avatar, it was that freaking awe inspired. Unfortunately, after this wonderful setup, we get an absolutely convoluted plot that has no sense of direction whatsoever.
The casting in this film ruins any sort of charm its characters it could have had. Cara Delevigne is actually great (and not to mention super attractive) in this and I’ll give her casting a break-she worked well. It’s not Dane DeHaan‘s fault, but, his overall presence does not fit his Chris Pratt/Han Solo personality he is supposed to have. It feels so weird and unnatural. DeHaan gives it him all but he just doesn’t physically look the part, it would be like me being cast as that. The problem I have is that the 2 main characters are so inherently unlikeable. They don’t care about ANYONE but themselves and each other, they’re f***ing narcissists. Rihanna also plays one of the most unnecessary parts of this movie. She adds nothing, does nothing and then her character is supposed to mean something and it just doesn’t work.
The plot is the worst part though. We get generic cookie cutter character, a villain that makes Yellowjacket in Ant-Man look like Calvin Candi in Django Unchained, a plot that has no coherent structure and just drops information you don’t need and then hardly gives you information you do need-making an overall film experience that’s equal parts interesting, baffling and somehow kinda dull all at the same time.
I really wanted to be a champion of this movie, I love big science fantasy adventure movies. While I do admire some amazing concepts in this film, the film itself is just fundamentally broken from scene one yet doesn’t show its true colours until around 30 minutes in. I loved the world it builds, and there aren’t many people better at world-building than Luc Besson.
Citizens of Imagination: Creating the Universe of Valerian
Sci-fi, action, adventure | France, 2017 | 12 | 27th November 2017 (UK) |Lionsgate Films | Dir.Luc Besson |Cara Delevingne, Dane DeHaan, Ethan Hawke, Rihanna, Clive Owen | Buy: [Blu-ray + UV]