GENERAL DISCUSSIONS

My psuedo-definitive Serenity review : *spoilers*

POSTED BY: MUDRON
UPDATED: Sunday, May 8, 2005 17:21
SHORT URL:
VIEWED: 5100
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Sunday, May 8, 2005 12:01 AM

MUDRON


The night before any of you fellow Browncoats creep off to your local theatres to take a gander at Serenity, do yourself a huge favor: sit down with a battered copy of the “Firefly” box set and carve your way through the episodes “Out of Gas” and “Objects in Space”. Well, okay, just do it. Again.

Consider it a two-hour makeshift prequel, a treat, one last draught of earlier, happier sights with Whedon’s spacefaring crew,…. or – to paraphrase Stephen King (oh, hush) - because "I’d have you see them this way not because they have won a great battle – they know better than that, every one of them – but because now they are ka-tet for the last time. The story of their fellowship ends here, on this make-believe street and beneath this artificial sun; the rest of the tale will be short and brutal compared to all that’s gone before. Because when ka-tet breaks, the end always comes quickly.”

That slice of morbidity aside, I can tell you that I’m not the most easily impressed sonofabitch on the planet. You’re talking to a guy didn’t think much of either “Kill Bill” (not violent enough), or “Sin City” (too much in love with it’s source material to be worth a damn to anybody but the sternest Frank Miller-jockies), but Serenity? Yeah, Joss Whedon has earned a special place in my blackened heart for not only finding a way to resurrect his beloved little gaggle of anti-heroes (on the silver screen no less), but then he has the balls to take a fucking sledgehammer to his freshly-revived crew, grimly beating the entire crew within an inch of their lives (and beyond, in some cases) while the neighbors are watching.

Speaking of beatings, though: there’s a special place in hell reserved for the projectionist who worked the booth at Serenity’s Portland screening. Not only did the dozing celluloid-monkey in question forget to turn the screening room’s sound system on until halfway through Joss Whedon’s pre-recorded remarks, but then said projectionist “kinda-sorta” forgot to load reel #2 into the projector’s cue, so there was an inexplicable jump from a closeup of dirty boots of a marauding Reaver to a shouting match between Mal and the rest of his crew regarding River’s having going batshit at the Maidenhead bar in Beaumonde.

After this scene (and partway into what’ll probably come to be known as “the Godfather scene” between Mal and Book), the Universal exec in attendance finally had the film shut down (“They’ll attack you from theeee ssssshhiiiiiiiidddsssssshhhhh…..”) and asked us goofballs packed in the seats whether we’d like to wait 20 minutes for them to slap Reel #2 back into the film’s cue. Before he can even finishing asking, the exec is shouted down by cries of “REAVERS!” “YES! GOD YES!” and perhaps a few things muttered in slightly mangled Mandarin (though that may’ve just been a cry resulting from indegestion. We geeks aren’t known for our prowess with the cooking utensils, after all.)

Anyway, during the 20 minute break between reel changes, I trundle down to the lobby where I stumble across an interesting find: the Universal exec’s notes laying unattended on a cardboard box next to the door to the men’s room. I take a quick peek at the top sheet and take a mental note of the few things that’ve been jotted down (“Jayne beat up by 90 lbs girl”, etc.) on the white sheet. A few moments later, I spot the exec himself being cornered by an especially rabid Firefly fan who is bitching and moaning like a teething baby about all kinds of stuff, the Serenity’s newly-added “spindly-legs” in particular. I take a moment to defend the addition of these landing legs to the ship (they make the Serenity resemble a real – if morbidly obese – insect squatting down on it’s haunches as it lands, which cracked me up to no end) before heading back into the stinky comfort of the screening room.

Okay, this review is turning into a freaking essay, so I’ll just make a quick run-down of the good, the bad and the ugly (argh, I know, I know) of Serenity:

The Good:

- Kudos to Joss & Co. for taking a third pass at explaining the back story of the Firefly universe AND the introduction of both the ship and it’s crew while keeping things fresh and interesting. (Pity the poor steadicam guy responsible for lensing that uninterrupted five-minute shot which doubles as a tour of the Serenity and intro to it’s crew, though. )

- Contrary to how wonky a few bits of fight-choreography appeared in the Serenity trailer, Summer Glau’s complete and thorough ass-paddling of both a crowd of half-drunk (and relatively innocent) bar-patrons AND a legion of screeching Reavers was pretty damned swell (in fact, the girl could probably hold her own with the likes of one Beatrix Kiddo. Also - as has been noted before - she can still kill you with her brain. Well, River, I mean. I don’t think that the actress playing River can fire mind bullets just yet, though. Jesus.) Loved River bounding around the bar and stairwell of the Maidenhead, and the sword/axe double-action at Mr. Universe’s pad.

- Four words: Alliance fleet vs. Reaver armada. (Or is that five? Ah, screw it.) It’s a shame that Revenge of the Sith is hitting screens 4 months in advance of Serenity, otherwise Whedon’s zero-g fracas would’ve been a shoe-in for a BEST SPACE BATTLE EVER award. Even if our heroes are running away from the fight while everybody is getting blowed up. Whatever.

- Damned near everybody in this sordid tale ends up being shot or stabbed. Note to screenwriters everywhere: this is always always an AWESOME idea. It worked for Hamlet, it works for Serenity, and it can work for you. You hearin’ this George Lucas?

- It would seem that in the 26th century, ancient broadcasts of Fleischer Brothers “Superman” cartoons are still zipping and bouncing around the vast emptiness of the ‘verse. Mmm. Seems that there is a God, after all.

- Simply put, Nathan Fillion gives good bedraggled.


The Bad:

- Despite an extended visit to a planetside local absolutely drenched in asian artifice, few notable asian extras are given screentime in Serenity. I was hoping to either see oodles more Sihonese citizens, or at least a throw-away explanation for the dearth of asian faces in this particular ‘verse (i.e. “Ah, this is the best engine degreaser I’ve had since ALL THE POOR GODDAMNED CHINESE EXTRAS GOT BLOWED UP 20 YEARS AGO. BLOWED UP WITH A FORK.”), but no dice this time. Argh, man, argh.

The Ugly:

- In the future, it would seem that gaping lacerations will be staunched with shaving cream. If I ever pull a Rip Torn and wake up 500 years in the future, I can only hope someone will see fit to fix my broken limbs with buckets of ranch dressing applied with a mortar’s spade.

- No “Ballad of Serenity” to be heard in this ‘bless-this-mess’ cut of the film (though a fair amount of the score was still comprised of temp tracks yanked from The Bourne Supremacy et al, so who knows what the completed score might include), and there seemed to be quite a on-again/off-again love affair between Universal’s sound effects guys and the whole “No Sound In Space” idea. Granted, all the shots involving the Serenity scooting about by itself in deep space are as quiet as a mousefart, but things get a bit noisier in extra-orbital environs (also when concussive spaceborn explosions are involved), and things get down right KERBLOOEY! POW! POW! EEEEYOOOOORRRR KERBOOSH! during the aforementioned Alliance vs. Reaver pissing-match. If we’re lucky, the Universal folk might let Joss knock down the SFX during these big space tussles, though. It’s surprising how potent the jump from complete silence to blaring klaxons and gunblasts can be when 5.1 surround sound systems get involved in the equation. Hooah.

- THE Serenity FONT DEAR GOD THE Serenity FONT PLEASE KILL IT NOW. Seriously, folks: whoever decided to base Serenity’s entire promotional campaign around a cheap and ugly font like Papyrus needs to have his gorram head examined. I cracked a smile when I saw how cheesy the Serenity logo looked on the mini-posters handed out to Firefly/Serenity freaks at last year’s San Diego ComiCon, but my eyeballs almost exploded like overcooked poached eggs when I saw that same logo seared onto the hull of the Serenity itself almost a year later. I’m not saying that Universal needs to get in touch with Rob Zombie and ask him to design a new, Hot Topic-friendly font made of blood and unborn babies for the flick’s print campaign, but the film deserves some Copperplate Bold-love, at the very least. Hell, I’ll design a new logo for a nickel and half a French fry, for God’s sakes. AND YOU DON’T WANT THAT TO HAPPEN, DO YOU?

(I didn’t think so. So nyeah.)



Agh, in the end though, I guess this is the part where I top off my review with a witty “thank you” to Joss for not only seeing Serenity from a metaphorical entertainment-industry scrapyard to a berth in theatres across the country, but also for allowing a few hundred of lucky Browncoats the privilege of taking his battered beauty (both the ship and the film) out for a quick spin before the last few coats of paint are applied to her metaphorical hull. I know that there’s gonna be a lot of hand-wringing on the part of Universal big-wigs regarding the appeal of a flick like this to the average filmgoer (and truth be told, it’s probably gonna be a tough sell to some folks, no matter what anybody does between now and September), but the truth still stands that the film is an accurate extension of Serenity’s captain: a bit dense, with a troubled history yet well-meaning and destined to survive (one way or another) all that the universe sees fit to hurl at it.

Ultimately, however, I’m reminded of that pesky gorramned Stephen King again, and these words of his in particular (this is a bite-sized mission statement of the entire Firefly/Serenity phenomena if there ever was one, it seems):

"He taught me if you kill what you love, you're damned."
"I am damned already," Roland said calmly. "But perhaps even the damned may be saved."
"Are you going to get all of us killed?"
Roland said nothing.
Eddie seized the rags of Roland's shirt. "Are you going to get her killed?"
"We all die in time," the gunslinger said. "It's not just the world that moves on." He looked squarely at Eddie, his faded blue eyes almost the color of slate in this light. "But we will be magnificent." He paused. "There's more than a world to win, Eddie. I would not risk you and her -- I would not have allowed the boy to die -- if that was all there was."
"What are you talking about?"
"Everything there is," the gunslinger said calmly. "We are going to go, Eddie. We are going to fight. We are going to be hurt. And in the end we will
stand."

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 1:54 AM

OXYOPIA


I liked this review not only for its intelligent phrasing, but also for its lack of over-the-top fanboy fanaticism that seems to be saturating everyone else's reactions to the film. (Yes, I am looking at you, posters on the the Universal site...you all know who I mean)

I doubt that Universal will remove all the sound from space simply b/c the vast majority of theater-goers are expecting to see (or rather hear) those lasers going Zap! and those explosions going KaBlooie! However, as you pointed out, they did limit the scenes with sound and it worked really well as a point of contrast for when all those cute and cuddly Reavers got to play with our fun-loving Alliance.

You also brought up a point I have been trying to get clarified ever since watching the film. At the end, the entire crew is pretty beat up and many would probably not have survived if not for immediate medical treatment. I can understand how they would have received this treatment, though so that is not my issue.

My question concerns that of the Alliance Operative and what Mal did to him to keep him both mute and incapacitated, but from which he was able to not only give orders to stand down but also make a full recovery?

My initial thought was that he crushed the man's windpipe and broke his back...then left him to his last few minutes of life watching his beliefs in the Alliance be shattered by the video broadcast. If this was the case, though, the assassin would not have been able to issue any orders afterwards, having come down with a severe case of death.

I guess that medics could have gotten to the guy before he died to work their magic and save him (similiar to how all the rest of crew was all cured of their ailments), but we see him walking around like nothing had happened and chatting amicably so I doubt my assessment of his injuries was correct.

Has anyone got any light to shed on this for me? I am sorry for going a little off-topic, but this has been bugging me since Thursday.

-Oxy


------------------------------------------------

'What people call impossible is just stuff they
haven't seen yet...'

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 5:22 AM

WHOISRIVER


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SPOILERS FOLLOW!!!! DO NOT READ ON THOSE WHO HAVEN'T SEE THE MOVIE!!!
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I think it's possibly a little brass eye'd to call this review definitive, but it is good. It pretty much agrees with some of my thoughts on the movie.

Regarding the Serenity font.... In all honesty, in the grand scheme of things I don't think it much matters. There are bigger issues to worry about for 'versal.

The fact somebody complained about Serenity's landing legs worries me. Hello?

I think the final 1/4 of the film is indeed a shooting/stab match gone overdrive, and: I think it really works. It draws people in. Certainly, it threw some people out as they couldn't cope with the idea that Mal's sucide mission might actually be, well, sucide. I think the idea that people can and do actually die frightens people.

My good, bad and ugly;


Good:

- Reavers. Tres cool. The explaination, too, is simple but not over the top.

- Simon. Simon steps up. He goes balls.

- River. Give the girl an axe more often: it's fun.

- Book. I actually LIKED his scenes with Mal. I liked the fact he wasn't going to tell Mal who he was, but he just had to believe in something.

- The forementioned 5 minute Serenity-crew and ship Steadycam introduction. It just freakin' rocks.

- Lots more (I need to see it again).

The bad;

- I wasn't a great fan of Mr. Universe. I quite like the actor, but the part didn't quite work for me. A little too much 'plot device' for me. (I'm not saying I could do better, like).

The ugly;

- Buffy bot.

All in all, I think Serenity does a bang up job of advancing the Fireflyverse plot, giving us some character moments (Simon and Kaylee, bless), making people laugh and making people feel emotion.

It's a film that will stick with me, and will be rewatchable in 15 years.

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 6:05 AM

DEANNAMAY


aaaarrrgggh!!!! I have so long to wait to see this movie, wahhhh!!! I will watch it on my days off, and then count the days for it to come out on a special DVD with lots of extras. I will have to focus on that, I guess.

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 6:46 AM

DESANGRO


Quote:

Originally posted by WhoIsRiver:
SPOILERS FOLLOW!!!! DO NOT READ ON THOSE WHO HAVEN'T SEE THE MOVIE!!!

Select to view spoiler:


- Reavers. Tres cool. The explaination, too, is simple but not over the top.




What's their explanation?

Come on, sock it to me. I live on spoilers.

Also, what's the tactics used by the Alliance and Reaver fleets in space? Does their battle make sense? I've been geekily debating with myself over who would win, comparing the Alliance to the Roman infantry and the Reavers to some barbarian horde-- it doesn't matter if the Romans are outmanned or not fighting on their own turf, they'll still win because they have vastly superior training, discipline, and equipment. So too, I have been thinking, it would be in a dust-up between the Alliance and the Reavers. Unless the Reavers have some sort of military genius on their side...

Spoiler me rotten.

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 6:48 AM

WHOISRIVER


I'm not saying the explaination. Honestly, Serenity works much better unspoiled on many levels.

Regarding Alliance vs Reavers... It's like Cavemen Vs Astronaughts!

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 8:18 AM

MUDRON


Quote:

Originally posted by DeSangro:
Quote:

Originally posted by WhoIsRiver:
SPOILERS FOLLOW!!!! DO NOT READ ON THOSE WHO HAVEN'T SEE THE MOVIE!!!

Also, what's the tactics used by the Alliance and Reaver fleets in space? Does their battle make sense? I've been geekily debating with myself over who would win, comparing the Alliance to the Roman infantry and the Reavers to some barbarian horde-- it doesn't matter if the Romans are outmanned or not fighting on their own turf, they'll still win because they have vastly superior training, discipline, and equipment. So too, I have been thinking, it would be in a dust-up between the Alliance and the Reavers. Unless the Reavers have some sort of military genius on their side...

Spoiler me rotten.




Select to view spoiler:


Christ, i didn't even think about who actually won that fight until you just asked! (Which is understandable, considering that the audience's attention is fixed suarely on the plight of the Serenity and her crew as she shucks and jives through the fight in an attempt to put herself as far away from that pissing-match as quickly as possible...)

Anyway, I guess it's safe to assume that the Alliance won, considering they're the only ones seen mopping up after the fight. Though it's a bit surprising to imagine that they won, considering that the reaction of the Alliance crewmen to the sight of a huge Reaver armada suddenly erupting from a dust cloud was something straight out of a Monthy Python flick: "RUN AWAY! RUN AWAY!"

But yeah, the battle - what little we see of it - is pretty rough-and-tumble, what with the larger capital ships tumbling & crashing into one another while the smaller fighters dart about the fiery wreckage....


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Sunday, May 8, 2005 8:23 AM

DESANGRO


Quote:

Originally posted by WhoIsRiver:
I'm not saying the explaination. Honestly, Serenity works much better unspoiled on many levels.



Aww, c'mmmmmon. Pretty please?

Select to view spoiler:


It's not like I haven't already figured out who's going to die in the film...


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Sunday, May 8, 2005 8:35 AM

SHINY


Honestly, I don't think any victor was definitively shown, as we follow Serenity away from the space battle as it is still in progress, but as a previous post mentioned, it's probably safe to assume that the alliance won or at least drove off the reaver fleet, since they are the ones left, at least on the surface of the planet.

Jayne, your mouth is talkin. Might want to look into that.

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 8:35 AM

MUDRON


Quote:

Originally posted by WhoIsRiver:

SPOILERS FOLLOW!!!! DO NOT READ ON THOSE WHO HAVEN'T SEE THE MOVIE!!!

I think it's possibly a little brass eye'd to call this review definitive, but it is good. It pretty much agrees with some of my thoughts on the movie.

Regarding the Serenity font.... In all honesty, in the grand scheme of things I don't think it much matters. There are bigger issues to worry about for 'versal.

The fact somebody complained about Serenity's landing legs worries me. Hello?

I think the final 1/4 of the film is indeed a shooting/stab match gone overdrive, and: I think it really works. It draws people in. Certainly, it threw some people out as they couldn't cope with the idea that Mal's sucide mission might actually be, well, sucide. I think the idea that people can and do actually die frightens people.

My good, bad and ugly;


Good:

- Reavers. Tres cool. The explaination, too, is simple but not over the top.

- Simon. Simon steps up. He goes balls.

- River. Give the girl an axe more often: it's fun.

- Book. I actually LIKED his scenes with Mal. I liked the fact he wasn't going to tell Mal who he was, but he just had to believe in something.

- The forementioned 5 minute Serenity-crew and ship Steadycam introduction. It just freakin' rocks.

- Lots more (I need to see it again).

The bad;

- I wasn't a great fan of Mr. Universe. I quite like the actor, but the part didn't quite work for me. A little too much 'plot device' for me. (I'm not saying I could do better, like).

The ugly;

- Buffy bot.

All in all, I think Serenity does a bang up job of advancing the Fireflyverse plot, giving us some character moments (Simon and Kaylee, bless), making people laugh and making people feel emotion.

It's a film that will stick with me, and will be rewatchable in 15 years.




Select to view spoiler:


Nah, i'm not suggesting that my review is the Serenity review to and all Serenity reviews, but that it's just all of my own personal thoughts served up in one messy little package. (This, friends, is why i'm not writing reviews for The New Yorker.)

But holy hell, there was a point during that last 20 minutes of the film, right after Mal has been run through with The Operative's sword (and Simon has been near fatally shot, and River has been dragged off by the Reavers, and Book and Wash are both dead, and Jayne has been riddled with bullets, and Zoe has been carved up like a Thanksgiving turkey, and even Kaylee has been tagged in the neck by the Reavers) that i thought that Joss had finally snapped: that he'd decided to let everybody go out in one big-screen blaze of glory in the name of putting a size-20 boot right up the Alliance's ass, that he'd decided that there was no chance in hell of bringing the crew back for either another film or television series...

But, of course, i was wrong. Thank Yahweh and all his angels, man. ;)

People don't seem to be the biggest fans of Mr. Universe, though. I didn't have a problem with him, but maybe that's because i like the idea of Jews in space. With robot girlfriends.

(But that's just me.)


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Sunday, May 8, 2005 8:38 AM

SHINY


Great review by the way, Mudron. Please feel free to also join us browncoats who have seen the movie on this serenityspoilers yahoo group:

http://movies.groups.yahoo.com/group/serenityspoilers



Jayne, your mouth is talkin. Might want to look into that.

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 8:43 AM

WHOISRIVER


Somebody has posted it above...

To clarify...

Select to view spoiler:



The Reaver ships (what are left of them) come after the crew of Serenity as they crash land. Mal goes off to find Mr Universe, and as he does this the Reavers advance on what's left of the crew.

Several of the crew then get critically injured..

They end up locking themselves in a safe. However, just as it's about to close River says "My turn" quietly and jumps through the closing vault door, locked in a room full of all the Reavers. She takes a weapon or two from the Reavers, and preceeds to slaughter them all herself.


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Sunday, May 8, 2005 9:03 AM

MUDRON


Quote:

Originally posted by DeSangro:
Quote:

Originally posted by WhoIsRiver:
SPOILERS FOLLOW!!!! DO NOT READ ON THOSE WHO HAVEN'T SEE THE MOVIE!!!

Select to view spoiler:


- Reavers. Tres cool. The explaination, too, is simple but not over the top.




What's their explanation?

Come on, sock it to me. I live on spoilers.



Select to view spoiler:


The reasons for the Alliance wanting River back in their grasp is tied together with the origin-story of the Reavers.

I know that in the show (and even at several points in the film) it was posited that the Reavers were simply deep-space explorers who were driven mad by staring into the stellar abyss for too long, but their TRUE origins are revealed to be thus:

Several decades before the current events in the Firefly 'verse - while terraforming a planet known as "Miranda" on the outer rim of civilised space - the Alliance decided to embark on a little experiment: while terraforming Miranda, the Alliance had their scientists dope the planet's atmosphere with just a wee bit of secret chemical compounds specially designed to encourage docility and compliance amongst the planet's burgeoning colonial population.

What the Alliance scientists *didn't* expect however, is that this secret chemical compound would reacte with an unknown element in the planet's atmosphere, which served to amplify the effects of the secret compound a hundred times over. As a result of this accident, the vast majority of the planets' population of 30 million people simply gave up on taking care of themselves and laid down to die.

Unfortunately for both the Alliance (and the entire civilised 'verse), this chemical compound had a completely opposite effect on 10% of Miranda's population...turning these 300,000 people into monstrously aggressive, bloodthirsty cannibals almost overnight.

Eventually, these newly-crafted savages got their hands on a few starships, escaped into cosmos, and BOOM: the Reavers were born.

And guess who'se the only civilian in the entire universe who knows that the Alliance is directly resposible for not only the deaths of 30 million innocent people, but the genesis of the galaxy's most feared deep-space mauraders? You guessed it: our little River Tam.


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Sunday, May 8, 2005 9:05 AM

MSCKAREN


For a good overview of the movie with all kinds of spoilery details, go here:

http://www.dvdtalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=415213&page=1&pp=25

Scroll down to the blacked out posts from JackSkeleton starting with #22. He covers the entire movie in three posts. Just highlight the blacked out portions to read it...

Before the prescreenings this was the best source I found for my spoiler fix. Still the best complete overview I've read. Others have eloquently described parts in greater detail but this is the best overall description of the movie.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
"Appears they've canceled the show and we're still here. What does that make us?"
"Big damn junkies, Sir!"
"Ain't we just."

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 10:12 AM

DEADMAN


throughout 90 of the film, the only sound in space is when serenity begins atmospheric reentry...at which point THERE IS SOUND people. We KNOW this from the apollo capsules...the secound those things hit even the most minimal atmosphere at 900 miles an hour...there's sound.

That said, the sound in the ending space battle...yeah. Is jarring and doesnt do it for me. I really didnt want it there. That sequence needs a nice strong musical acompanyment, and to have all sound go by by.

"Also? I can kill you with my brain."
-River

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 10:37 AM

FFFAN1


Quote:

Originally posted by DeSangro:
Also, what's the tactics used by the Alliance and Reaver fleets in space? Does their battle make sense? I've been geekily debating with myself over who would win, comparing the Alliance to the Roman infantry and the Reavers to some barbarian horde-- it doesn't matter if the Romans are outmanned or not fighting on their own turf, they'll still win because they have vastly superior training, discipline, and equipment. So too, I have been thinking, it would be in a dust-up between the Alliance and the Reavers. Unless the Reavers have some sort of military genius on their side...



When you see the movie, you'll understand that this question isn't really applicable. It's not your typical "Two fleets battling it out for the fate of the universe" type of space battle. There isn't really a strategy at all, and any tactics that might have been used would only have been on a ship by ship basis.
Using your Roman/Barbarian analogy, it's kind of like hunting parties from both sides blundering into each other in the middle of the woods. Not much more in the way of tactics than "Help your buddy if you can and don't get dead."

*************************************************
It is, however, somewhat fuzzy on the subject of kneecaps.

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 1:24 PM

MUDRON


Yep, it'd be interesting if they were to knock out all of the SFX during the big Alliance/Reaver battle and replace it with a thick slice of blood-pumping war drum/Chinese erhu/western fiddle music.

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 2:31 PM

TZEGHA


Quote:

Yep, it'd be interesting if they were to knock out all of the SFX during the big Alliance/Reaver battle and replace it with a thick slice of blood-pumping war drum/Chinese erhu/western fiddle music.


I liked how you think after reading your review, but after this statement, I just love ya!

*shivers at the thought of Taiko drumming*

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 3:26 PM

DESANGRO


Quote:

Originally posted by mudron:

Select to view spoiler:


The reasons for the Alliance wanting River back in their grasp is tied together with the origin-story of the Reavers.

I know that in the show (and even at several points in the film) it was posited that the Reavers were simply deep-space explorers who were driven mad by staring into the stellar abyss for too long, but their TRUE origins are revealed to be thus:

Several decades before the current events in the Firefly 'verse - while terraforming a planet known as "Miranda" on the outer rim of civilised space - the Alliance decided to embark on a little experiment: while terraforming Miranda, the Alliance had their scientists dope the planet's atmosphere with just a wee bit of secret chemical compounds specially designed to encourage docility and compliance amongst the planet's burgeoning colonial population.

What the Alliance scientists *didn't* expect however, is that this secret chemical compound would reacte with an unknown element in the planet's atmosphere, which served to amplify the effects of the secret compound a hundred times over. As a result of this accident, the vast majority of the planets' population of 30 million people simply gave up on taking care of themselves and laid down to die.

Unfortunately for both the Alliance (and the entire civilised 'verse), this chemical compound had a completely opposite effect on 10% of Miranda's population...turning these 300,000 people into monstrously aggressive, bloodthirsty cannibals almost overnight.

Eventually, these newly-crafted savages got their hands on a few starships, escaped into cosmos, and BOOM: the Reavers were born.

And guess who'se the only civilian in the entire universe who knows that the Alliance is directly resposible for not only the deaths of 30 million innocent people, but the genesis of the galaxy's most feared deep-space mauraders? You guessed it: our little River Tam.




For the eyes of the innocent, my entire response will be spoilered...

Select to view spoiler:


Yeah, but surely those original colonists would be dead by now. The contamination must be communicable to their offspring, then... unless the baby Reavers are just indoctrinated throughout childhood that outsiders are bad-- and dinner, besides.

I wonder if there is a danger of the 'Reaver madness' spreading to others if there's prolonged contact (like the survivor in Bushwhacked?

Eh. I dunno. I kinda had the genesis of an idea that they were soldiers or religious cultists gone insane after too much space travel and isolation from others. I still like that theory a bit better. Not that I'm upset about being spoilered-- I did ask for it, but it doesn't really jive with the existential theme in the series about the 'black'-- the emptiness of space and the thin line that separates the sane from the insane.

Or maybe I'm wrong?


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Sunday, May 8, 2005 3:30 PM

SHINY


Quote:

Originally posted by Tzegha:
Quote:

Yep, it'd be interesting if they were to knock out all of the SFX during the big Alliance/Reaver battle and replace it with a thick slice of blood-pumping war drum/Chinese erhu/western fiddle music.


I liked how you think after reading your review, but after this statement, I just love ya!

*shivers at the thought of Taiko drumming*



Actually, the music you used for your first vid would fit quite nicely, also... :)

Jayne, your mouth is talkin. Might want to look into that.

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 3:44 PM

TZEGHA


What I found fantastic (and I think I said this over at the yahoo spoilerwhore group) was that the placeholder music was the very same music I'd been using as my Firefly-esque inspiration music, for fanfic'ing and vidding (my second vid used music from The Horse Whisperer, which Serenity stole liberally from)

Anything David Newman-ish mixed with erhus or duduks (Niska's theme) would be fab! (just no sitars, please!)

I now feel silly that my Reaver vid doesn't quite work... maybe if I take off the Serenity logo and put the Firefly logo back, it'd be more appropriate, hmmm...

and, thanks!

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Sunday, May 8, 2005 5:21 PM

CANTTAKESKY


Thank you for the most entertaining review of Serenity, indeed any movie, I've read in a long, long time. You have quite a gift there. If you ever write a novel, let me know. I'll buy it.

Can't Take My Gorram Sky

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