Quarter To Three Movie Club - NOV 2018/Europa Report - Spoilers Allowed!!


#221

So as a counterpoint, I enjoyed it. Not perfect, and not as good as the movie this most felt like to me, Moon. But it did several things I like.

The story itself is one that, at a broad level, works for me. The framing of it as a pseudo documentary/ press conference release isn’t a bad idea, even if it doesn’t fully come together. The way the mission discoveries are laid out was effective, even if the ultimate reveal was predictable.

Now the mission structure, and the way it is pursued, did have issues. The Russian biologist in particular I felt acted stupidly, and against type. She had her singular discovery. You don’t push further on the first exploration, you analyze your first sample and get that data before pushing deeper. Instead her foolish act cost the team valuable science data. And the orbital mechanics… no. Just no. Also they would absolutely not send the entire crew down on the lander like that, and the lander would be far smaller! And the gravity was all wrong. I know I know, I’m being picky on technical details with that.

Still, despite several flaws with technical and character actions, the ultimate story does well by both. Particularly in the form of Michael Nyqvist. In the end the characters decide to sacrifice themselves in order to achieve their ultimate mission, and how the discovery of life was more important than themselves. Despite my annoyance with how cavalier some were about it, most of the crew rightly prioritized the mission.

The vistas were also appropriately interesting, though good lord would they never land in such broken terrain! Anyhow it isn’t up to The Martian standards of design for accuracy and utility, but it’s above par.

But the fact they took a fairly grounded story about looking for extraterrestrial life and made it the focus? I approve. Which is why, though I probably could come up with more criticisms than accolades, I come away positive on the film. Not great, has too many flaws for that, but a decent sci fi flick.


#222

Well, they weren’t planning to - they talk about how Andrei isn’t psychologically in a place where they felt comfortable leaving him in orbit by himself for what was expected to be weeks. And of course they’re down one already. I think a number of other deviations from real world space mission protocol could potentially be explained by the fact that they’ve gone literally years in transit and have a very limited window of opportunity to do the actual mission. But yeah, I’m sure it’s taking liberties nonetheless.


#223

Keep in mind, I ended up with a positive impression of the movie overall, despite my complaints. The ending really brought me around. The fact that they actually showed the creature instead of just teasing its appearance went a long way with me, it felt like the meaningless crew who meant nothing to me actually sacrificed themselves for something meaningful.


#224

Well, like Nesrie says, you have a ridiculously small sample size. ;) But beyond that, life would be boring if we all had the same tastes, right? What I find interesting, is all the comments are similar in their observations, but some people didn’t mind things that began to turn others off. It’s interesting.


#225

I mean, sure, but if y’all keep voting for slow-as-shit “art films” and complaining about actually watchable movies I am out. ;)


#226

This had 45 watchable minutes. It was a good TV episode. ;)


#227

I understand where you are coming from. I am hoping that one day, one day, we will watch a movie that I will actually enjoy watching. I was kind of surprised how Europa Report actually left a worse impression on me than the last one. And I am doing my best to actually sit down and watch these movies… and do nothing else to pay attention. I still had trouble with this one. It started losing me like 15 minutes in but for different reasons than the last one.


#228

There’s been a bunch of interesting stuff (to me) nominated, the voting has just seemed to go against it (I mean obviously I like Europa Report but it was a very near victory). But yeah, we will see. My ideal scenario for something like this is to find things I love but hadn’t already seen, bonus points for not knowing about them either. Which is why I intend to give everything a shot, if selected, at least until it becomes clear whether I gel with the crowd nominating.


#229

I’ve been using a super scientific method of voting myself, whether it looks cool, sounds interesting, or maybe it seems like the least worst of the bunch. I know some people liked this one, and that’s fine. It was space. It was modern. There are actors in there I know… what could go wrong?


#230

Oooof, finally got to watch this. Just in time. In a way I’m happy my choice didn’t win because it would have been impossible to schedule a viewing in one go. I managed with this one.

I’ll write some in depth thoughts later today, but my feelings echo a lot of what has been said in it not being a very interesting movie to talk about. I enjoyed it somewhat, but what I’d like to get out of this is discussion, and it seems hard to do here.

Short impressions: interesting premise executed in the most banal way possible as to avoid the movie actually being about anything at all. Other than the premise itself in the most literal reading possible. There’s no subtext at all anywhere.

What I find worth talking about is not the movie that is, but the many (more interesting) movies that it could have been.

More later.


#231

So, I did enjoy the movie. It does tick all the boxes. Hard sci-fi, found footage… going by what it says on the tin it was going to be awesome…

But then it did exactly what it said on the tin and nothing more.

Take an interesting premise with plenty of potential and make a movie about, I dunno, people dying due to accidents and stupid behaviour. Oh, and I guess at the end they decide to try to send the mission info when they are already dead anyway. The movie has no theme whatsoever, nothing it wants to say other than “space is cool”. It’s an ejoyable waste of time, but doesn’t really offer any food for thought.

The movie feels cheap. Not visually, but in terms of development. The script is a bare bones slasher with just a hard sci-fi makeover. The fact that everybody dies one by one cheapens the deaths and the emotional impact of anything that goes on (being soooo predictable doesn’t help either). Imagine, just imagine, this movie with just ONE death at the very end. An avoidable but poignant sacrifice to bring back the data. This is just one of the many versions of this that could have been so much more interesting…

The dialog and script is pretty mind numbing. As I mentioned above. NO SUBTEXT AT ALL. I mean, I can’t even remember a single line of dialog with subtext. It’s plain exposition and procedural all the time. There were a couple of places at the beginning when I thought I was going to get some character development, some insight on who these people were, like when the guy talks behind the women’s back about the suits.

And then you find out the only reason somebody is a dad is so he can die first in a cheap attempt to make the audience feel something. It goes downhill fast after that.

The guy seemingly going crazy but then not really was a nice touch, one of the few saving graces in terms of depth, but too little, too late.

Another missed oportunity is the faux documentary style. I was thinking: maybe the company that sent them is witholding some footage and this is a PR attempt, or stuff like that. But no, the movie decides to frame itself with an external, possibly unreliable narrator and uses that framing for exactly nothing whatsoever. Again.

Finally the editing. Way to undercut the original idea. It feels the filmmakers got insecure during editing, but the crazy structure and energetic fast cuts took me out from actually being there with the crew, which seems what the movie originally wanted to do. It does make for a faster viewing experience, but quite a souless one.

Again, I did enjoy it for what it was, but I found it utterly uninteresting because it was just what it was and didn’t even try to have any depth at all.


#232

To sneak in my take on this in before month-end, I thought it was… fine? I’d seen it back when it first came out, and I remember liking it but that’s about all I recalled. And a rewatch didn’t really raise or lower it much in my esteem. The cast was good, the writing decent, and I have a soft spot for found-footage films. Not particularly substantial, but goes down smooth.


#233

Note:

The Slightly Fascistic One Party slate stooge elections for December 2018 have begun

Follow this link to the December Thread!