the film, not the novel.
so.... um.... yeah.
that was really long.
I would love to describe the story but i doubt i could do it justice so i will grossly simplify.
This story is about a Soul being reincarnated over time and how it connects to the souls around them over the course of Humanity.
common things happen throughout the different stories, freedom gets taken away, fighting despite having lost everything, going up against what is most likely certain death in order to help spread knowledge.
Now, i will preface this by saying I have not read the book....
I will also say i saw this with someone who had read the book and found it "frustrating" however he added that the film takes some of the frustrating elements out....
so knowing me and knowing what i enjoy reading... yeah I'm probably not going to pick this up cause i would probably rip out my hair during any of the "after the fall" time line chapters.....
i was nearly ripping out my hair just listening to how badly English had degraded.... if i had to read that there would be no end to my bitching.
However... the film isn't bad... per se.
it's ambitious... really ambitious.... too ambitious.
I think this film try to accomplish way too much in too little time....
but at the same point i know this film is the best possible adaptation of that book we could ever get.
I think it's great that the studio was willing to take a risk on a project like this... but in the end i personally feel it didn't quite pay off.... not as much as it could have.
but as you can see I'm really torn about how this makes me feel so... time to break it down.
The Really Good:
The sets are lovely and i believe that each set would work in it's given time period. i especially love the room that gets completely decorated by remote control... it was pretty imaginative.
The acting is well done, i know there was some controversy over certain actors playing certain genders and ethnicity.... i honestly don't give a shit cause it wasn't stereotyping and again the actors did a great job.
The world that is set up is really easy to follow chronologically. You can see what things in the past cause other things to happen in the future. for me the world was the most interesting aspect about this film and had the most interesting story to tell.
the music was pretty neat as well, wouldn't listen to it outside of this film but still pretty well done.
The not so good:
apparently this is like the book but the film jumps from one style to the next without so much as a fadeout. in some parts it works really well and other part it felt like padding.... and this film is 172 minutes long.... the last thing it needed was padding.
speaking about the length the pacing was terrible... now to be honest i don't know how you could pace it any better... there are too many stories meshing together to make it feel cohesive. however with that same mindset i don't think i would have liked watching each story as a whole one after each other chronologically either.... more of that later...
oh... i guess now is later... okay well as I've stated innumerable times the thing that makes me care about the story as a whole is 100% driven by characters. If i don't care about the characters then no matter how good the film is otherwise i will not be able to enjoy it.
in every form of media that i consume this is true.... i like characters driving the plot not the plot driving the characters.... but this film does neither. This film has the world drive the characters.... but in my eyes that makes the characters pointless... and i think that is partially the point they were going for.... one life in a sea of many may not be able to change the world but they can start the ripple...
but in the end it boils down to i didn't give a shit about any of them... there were heart-string tugging moments with the Violins crying and i didn't bat an eyelash cause i didn't know enough about this character to worry or care. and if i don't care i wont invest myself in the plot and if i can't invest myself why am i wasting two hours of my life?
The Really bad:
two things took me right out of this film... just completely 4th wall shattering but not in a good way.
1. the hyper violence that borders on the cartoony.... it just didn't feel real and for a story that needs you to believe that this shit could happen over the course of humanity.... no... i don't buy it.... it didn't mesh with the rest of the feel of the film.
2. The makeup.
Wow the makeup in this was pretty Atrocious. somethings looked pretty good but any time someone was ages to be super old or of a different ethnicity... the face just got stiff from prosthetic and fell nose first into the uncanny valley.... it just didn't look right at all and the fact that i kept going "that isn't what a person would look like" i just couldn't concentrate on anything else.
Still the film isn't bad.... it's flawed... but it's not bad... i have a feeling it's a love it or hate it kind of situation.... if you like character driven stuff... i don't think you will enjoy this as much as someone who cares more about the overall world.
but seriously go watch it for yourself and make your own opinion.