Jupiter Ascending, released February 6th, can be added to the list of box office failures that sare seemingly hitting theaters nonstop in early 2015. Directed by the Wachowski Siblings(Lana Wachowski and Andy Wachowski), this film was expected to be a must see sci-fi action adventure for moviegoers, with the latest visual effects and all-star cast. Sadly, this was not at all the case. The first week was an absolute disaster for the film. With an estimated 200 million dollar budget, opening weekend brought in under 50 million dollars in both domestic and foreign theaters.
(Here comes the plot summary. Try to bare with me)
This film is about a woman named Jupiter Jones (Mila Kunis) who is a struggling cleaning woman for rich residents of the city of Chicago. One day, during a routine surgery operation, she is attacked by aliens that are posed as human doctors. Luckily she is saved by an alien adventurer by the name of Caine Wise (Channing Tatem). We then find out that an alien prince by the name of Balem (Eddie Redmayne) wants Jupiter dead so that he can inherit a production plant on the planet Jupiter and rights to the Earth. If she is left to live Balem will not receive his inheritance due to the fact that Jupiter is a genetic reincarnation of his mother, the recently deceased matriarch of his house. The movie follows the many attempts made by the royal family to kill Jupiter or trick her out of her ownership of the Earth. The movie concludes when Balem is killed by Jupiter and she returns to the Earth. We then realize she is going to continue living her life as an everyday house cleaner, not at all acknowledging that she is the supposed queen of Earth.
The plot is outrageously hard to follow while watching the movie. Even after I saw the film I needed to read multiple plot summaries from various websites to try and half understand what was going on. Another aspect of this movie that had a negative impact on the overall quality was the ridiculous dialogue. There were many scenes that were supposed to either be epic or romantic but if the viewer paid any attention to what the characters were saying the effects were ruined. For example, in one scene that is supposed to have a mystical effect a side character by the name of Stinger Apini (Sean Bean) is explaining to Jupiter how she is the Queen of the Earth. During this scene a swarm of bees surrounds Jupiter without touching her. Apini then says that bees were put on Earth to sense royalty, and that is why she was not stung. Seriously?! This is an actual interaction between two characters in this movie. The dialogue is poorly written and is only interesting in a shocking humorous way.
Sure, this film looks really good. The animation and visual effects are spot on, but that is quite honestly all this film has going for it. The acting was also slightly underwhelming. I was really hoping that with such a star studded cast there would be something to look forward to, especially from Eddie Redmayne who is nominated for an Oscar for his performance in The Theory of Everything. Those hopes were crushed when he began speaking in a ridiculous and dry voice that he maintained for the entire movie. Tate and Kunis did not do a terrible job; however, their performances in no way added to the film.
To be quite honest I was very disappointed with this movie as a whole. Besides the expensive budget and flashy visual effects there was not much going for the film. Yes, there were big name actors; however, their performances were all adequate at best. The plot was extremely confusing. Every time there was an advancement in the story it was forced and usually made little to no logical sense, even for a science fiction film. I would not recommend wasting the money to see this film in theaters.