Friday, March 13, 2009
Race to Witch Mountain Review
Witch Mountain is an entertaining movie with some good special FX at times, the acting wasn't too bad, and Dwayne Johnson (who I refuse to call The Rock...I just won't do it) was fine. I gave it a solid 80%, a B-, I'll get to why a little later.
The movie basically opens with the ship crashing in the desert outside Las Vegas and the obligatory government agencies rushing to find the crashed ship and it's passengers. They take the ship and we are treated to Dwayne Johnsons' character as a cab driver who gets a range of weird passengers: a couple Star Wars Storm Troopers (I almost wrote Droids, I am not really a Star Wars fan)and, Carla Gugino's astro-physicist/alien-finder-lady going to the UFO convention. Then he's at the taxi lot and two guys show up in a black SUV to tell him Mr.Wolf needs him for another job. He's all no! They leave after he busts them up a tad. He returns to his car and inside are the kids. They shove some money into his face and say to drive that way. Along the way a bunch of cars show up in pursuit. He thinks they are the guys from earlier, while the kids know they are the government people coming after them. A little later an alien bounty hunter shows up and chases them around. They get away and the government people chase them around, then the bounty hunter, then the government...you get the point.
Basically the kids were sent by their parents to Earth to retrieve some kind of device which was left here during some other time as an experiment to see if plants and life could be remade even after the environment was damaged, or something. They find it in a cabin and must return to their ship and take it back to their planet so they can convince the warring sides that they don't have to invade Earth afterall. See, they've destroyed their planet and one side, which sent the bounty hunter, believes that they need to invade Earth and make it their home. The kids' parents were arrested for believing this wasn't neccesary.
Eventually they gather up Carla Gugino and she comes along and there is a lot of awkwardness with Dwayne Johnson along the lines of "we like each other" garbage. Then they run from both baddies and the kids are captured and almost get prodded and poked until they are rescued and they run some more and take off in the ship. Of course the doors to the ship won't close all the way and Dwayne goes back and the bounty hunter makes it on and they fight...now he's gone! Yay! The End. This whole area kind of devolved into a cookie-cutter setup of run and chase and run and some really bland FX came in like the bullet slow-down by the ship, which looked just like it was painted on with some bad animation or something.
Now I gave it an 80% because it wasn't all that bad. There were some good chase scenes and explosions and it was a generally enjoyable story. What I did not like was the ridiculous "let's-make-these-two-characters-appear-attracted-to-one-another" portion as it made no sense and really had no part in the story, and also the whole government going after the kids. It was a little too much. Why couldn't there just be the bounty hunter, and maybe the government took the ship and they have to evade the bounty hunter and get the ship back? Ciaran Hinds' character was evil from the start and he was almost too evil and it made no sense to me. I didn't understand why he was after the kids other than he wanted to dissect them, but wouldn't the ship just be enough?
So 80% it was. I would recommend it for people looking for an enjoyable, fluffy yet interesting movie to watch. I wouldn't take small kids because it would probably bore them and it's a little much for their little heads to take in. But I could see some 7 year olds and up enjoying it and their parents wouldn't be bored during the viewing.