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Sci-Fi - Aliens

After Earth (2013)

Elevator Pitch

In the far future, after earth has long been abandoned and the inhabitants moved to Nova Prime, the humans have faced and beaten creatures called “ursa” who sense their prey due to fear. A Ranger general, known for his success in defeating the ursa is on a trip with his son in a spacecraft, also carrying an ursa, which crashes on an alien planet, earth. The general is injured, the rest of the crew dead, and the nearest energency beacon is in another part of the wreckage 100 km away. To activate the beacon his son must traverse the hostile environment, helped by an advanced communications system, hindered by the ferocious fauna and tracked by the ursa.


We glimpse the humans fighting the ursa, including the death of the general’s daughter, the spacecraft flies gracefully until destabilised by asteroids, the crash takes place and we are introduced to the communications system and the hazards the teenager is to face, then as he hikes actoss the landsacape, a number of set pieces with aggressive animals, plummeting temperatures, impressive scenary and finally, hardly a spoiler, a face to face with the ursa. Almost throughout he is in communication with his father who is able to tell him what is going on. No sex or nudity but some human/animal/alien violence.

A View This quite expensive outing was absolutely panned by the critics, scoring ony 12% on Rotten Tomatoes. Part of the problem was that it really made no sense, maybe reflecting the fact that while Will Smith is a great actor he may not be much of a storyteller. I mean it’s 3000 and something, yet no-one’s even got a handgun, which would have solved all the problems. It was extremely ponderous, and young Mr Smith was being required to punch way beyond his weight. I had heard that this was awful, and it was, so don’t bother with it.
Duration 1h 40m Rating (UK) 12A
Source of story An original screenplay.
Director M. Night Shyamalan
Writers/Script Gary Whitta, M. Night Shyamalan (story Will Smith)
Starring Jaden Smith, Will Smith, Sophie Okonedo, Zoë Kravitz
Additional Info This outing was also produced by Will Smith and a bunch of his friends and relatives. It actually covered all its costs, so not a total disaster.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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