Monday, September 26, 2005

Serenity, Now

Thanks to the fine people at Grace Hill Publicity I’m going to see Serenity later today. (If this falls through and the people at are not so fine, then I shall vituperate loudly.)

Joss Whedon- the Oscar and Emmy-nominated writer/director responsible for the worldwide television phenomena of Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Angel-now applies his trademark compassion and wit to a small band of galactic outcasts 500 years in the future in his feature film directorial debut, Serenity.

The film centers around Captain Malcolm Reynolds, a hardened veteran (on the losing side) of a galactic civil war, who now ekes out a living pulling off small crimes and transport-for-hire aboard his ship, Serenity. He leads a small, eclectic crew who are the closest thing he has left to family - squabbling, insubordinate and undyingly loyal.

When Mal takes on two new passengers-a young doctor and his unstable, telepathic sister-he gets much more than he bargained for. The pair are fugitives from the coalition dominating the universe, who will stop at nothing to reclaim the girl. The crew that was once used to skimming the outskirts of the galaxy unnoticed find themselves caught between the unstoppable military force of the Universal Alliance and the horrific, cannibalistic fury of the Reavers, savages who roam the very edge of space. Hunted by vastly different enemies, they begin to discover that the greatest danger to them may be on board Serenity herself.

I’m trying to figure out whether there are any people who read Rousseau who don’t know my love for Josh Whedon (Buffy, Angel, X-Men) and the story of this little spaceship that could. Suffice it to say, more and more scifi is becoming about characters and themes, and less about special effects or escapism, and I am loving it. I was an avid watcher of Firefly when it was first on television, a little part of me died when it didn’t get renewed but bupkis like John Doe did. One can hope not only that the movie is good, but that the PR department’s interest in getting everyone and their mother to see this is because they want to create a following for future releases, rather than a single good box-office showing.

Unfortunately, I think their commercials have been greatly lacking, and put across the idea that it’s just another rock-em-sock-em space shoot-em-up. Perhaps they need to do this to gather the LCD consumer, but it’s really just annoyed the segment they want to be shooting for in the first place: intelligent elites who need to be convinced that scifi can be used to tell a gripping and emotional story.

Other things that if you don’t know me, you should be watching:
Deadwood, Battlestar Galactica, Farscape, Katamari Damarcy. I recently have ordered the whole first season of Lost, so hopefully that will be worthwhile too.

And of course, The Colbert Report is starting in October. Sign up for tickets now!


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