1 hr 49 min
Staff Writer: Nathaniel Brayton
Elysium was my last hope for this summer, and the lesson I learned was to stop getting my hopes up.
In the future, Earth has become over-populated and littered with crumbling buildings, a reminder of what once was. The poor are stuck living on Earth, while the rich get a life free of poverty and disease on the space station Elysium. Matt Damon’s character, Max, who has gotten the short end of the stick even more so than everyone else living on Earth, tries to fight his way to the utopian society up in the sky.
The biggest problem I had with Elysium, was Max’s motives. Forget the fact that he is under-developed as a character. It’s a shame that the audience never truly understands his actions. Is he trying to get to Elysium for himself or is he trying to ignite a revolution? What’s the bigger picture? It’s this simple detail that throws off the whole film.
Even though we don’t understand his actions, Max as a character is not very relatable and kind of dense. In fact, I found myself cheering for Spider, Max’s shady employer, because he was the most interesting and well acted character. Spider was also the only person who wanted to enact change and start a revolution, which makes him the true hero in my book.
Another flaw is that getting into Elysium was way to easy, as was the end fight with one of the villains. Which leads me to the point that Jodie Foster’s and William Fichtner’s characters, two of the three main antagonists, are wasted in the story. There was a chance to write something brilliant, but instead they took the easy way out. Not to mention that Jodie Foster’s acting was stiff as a board.
Neill Blomkamp’s Elysium is a sci-fi movie about class, healthcare, and other social issues. I commend it for trying to make a point and have meaning, but it tries too hard to follow in District 9’s footsteps. In the end, Elysium needed to focus more on the subtleties of the story and less on the pointless, grotesque action.
out of 10