Friday, November 3

Wannabee Comic Book Movie

I finally got to watch Ultraviolet, starring Milla Jovovich. Some may be surprised that it took me so long to actually watch the flick, seeing as how it's an anime-styled superbabe-girlpower action flick... something I'd probably want to see as soon as possible. Well, bad reviews made me just push watching the movie back again and again... even with the movie loaded onto my XDAIIi, I still didn't have any time or inclination to watch it. The opportunity and the mood finally came early this week, as I was trapped home by a bad stomach, during the afternoon.

Ultraviolet opens up with a series of comic book covers starring the titular heroine- of course setting the tone for the over-the-top action to be featured in the flick. Set in a futuristic world where fear of disease has resulted in a future of sealed buildings and people wearing masks all the time, Ultraviolet sees the world divided in a war between normal humans and the Hemophages- or 'vampires' thanks to their pointy teeth and enhanced physical powers. The Hemophages were initially made out to be the ultimate warriors, but are eventually marked for extermination. Miss Jovovich plays Violent, an exceptionally-gifted and deadly vampiress and assassin who is out to grab a secret weapon the ruling regime (which incorporates religious/medical and corporate tyranny) is supposedly preparing to finish the war against the Hemophages.

Well, it turns out the 'weapon' is a little boy who seems to awaken deep maternal feelings in the superbitchy warrior, and soon she's fighting to save his life along with trying to bring down the evil government/corporate/pharmaceutical overlord. Along the way she kills lots of enemies. Cross that- she kills armies of enemies, hacking them down in droves. Gas-mask wearing, glass-like body armor-clad thugs fall to Violet's many guns (which are conveniently 'digitized' until needed) or her oddly-oriental katana-ish sword.

With all the action, you'd think that Ultraviolet would be incredibly cool. The movie looks pretty slick, with nice production values, but it ultimately looks kinda... not there. It seems to be lacking a lot, perhaps since the world Violet lives in seems vacuous, impersonal and empty- it's just a large setting for lots of videogame-like fighting, and that's not very deep or too engaging after a while. It's certainly not as visually stimulating as, say, the world of The Fifth Element (another Jovovich-starrer).
It also kinda takes away from the movie that you never feel that Violent will ever be in any danger- despite her actually saying that she doubts her survival at several points in the movie, she plows through hordes and hordes of enemies like a hot knife through lukewarm butter- the enemies are really STOOPID in this movie. The fights themselves aren't particularly well done, or impressive, and it's kinda weird to see jumpsuited, masked generic hitmen running around with katanas like some kind of industrial ninja. On paper, this would be kinda cool- here in a movie, it just feels... iffy.

Everything else... eeeh. The script is blah, the acting bleh, and the storyline really doesn't matter. Maybe that's all irrelevant anyway... Ultraviolet pleases with visuals, and in that it's pretty-looking, shallow but entertaining fun for a while. After Violent kills her, oh, 600th enemy, you just know that the end boss doesn't stand a chance.

Darn... Aeon Flux. Elektra. Ultraviolet. All superbabe movies, all kinda crappy. At least, when I ever think of making a K.I.A. movie, I am well-versed in what it shouldn't be like. Oh well.

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