Joss Whedon has created a masterpiece of theatrical proportions. The man who craves to do a musical play one day surely has it in him and after the success of Serenity and subsequent sequels pass him by, I am sure that he will achieve that goal.
But in the meantime the movie that was spawned from the cancelled fox TV show Firefly, including every original cast member, is another feather in the already bird looking cap of Joss Whedon.
The dialogue, which is definitely on its way to being called ‘Whedonesque’, is masterful and weaves between being emotionally charged to wittily humorous. The viewer will sit there wondering why it is that they were just laughing, considering the emotional drama being played out before their eyes.
The cinematography is simply brilliant, with 180 degree turns, perfect framing shots and a wonderful scene towards the end of the movie with River, axe and sword in hand surrounded by sunlight. This shot, and more, are simply evidence of the mind behind the design and the way that Joss can put that into a movie.
While casting for a spin-off movie is not necessarily one to be brought into the picture, thanks to there already being an original cast, one member must be brought to your attention. Chiwetel Ejiofor, who plays ‘The Operative’ within the movie, is simply brilliant – a brilliant juxtaposition to Nathan Fillion who plays the lead role, Mal Reynolds.
Their cinematic relationship, such as it is when one is trying to kill the other, is brilliant. Lines bordering on the down-right humorous always set you back a few minutes wondering where you just were before your suddenly brought back into the movie again with lines like this;
The Operative: Do you know what your sin is?
Capt. Malcolm Reynolds: Hell, I'm a fan of all seven... but right now, I'm gonna have to go with wrath.
While choosing a memorable cast performance is nigh on impossible, I would have to pass it along to Summer Glau who plays the mentally tormented Rive Tam. Providing a sublime performance from lines such as ‘I ate a bug!’ to scenes in which Buffy the Vampire slayer would be hard pressed to go, Summer’s grace and beauty follow her everywhere.
I walked out of the movie and decided it was the best movie I’ve ever seen. I’ve had a week or so to think about it, and I’m still not willing to relinquish the spot to any movie yet. ‘Definitely better then the last three Star Wars, another reminder to George Lucas to stay at home; and definitely up there with Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings Trilogy, if not better.
Joss Whedon has created a universe which is not only realistic, but shockingly so. Fans have been crying over certain aspects of the movie, which have been the points over which they were so in love with the show. Fickle fans are found everywhere and it is best to ignore the loudest and listen to the softest – we’re the ones who’ll stick by the movie till the end.
The movie is a 10/10 for me. Definitely a piece of cinematic genius, definitely worth a few sequels and hopefully a revision off the TV series. But if I was to describe it in a word, ‘Shiny!’
Reviewed by Joshua Hill