Movie begins, fade to black with white letters: "2011, A Virus kills 99% of the worlds population. A scientist, Trevor Goodchild, develops a cure. The five million survivors live in Bregna, the last city on earth. The Goodchild dynasty rules for 400 years. Rebels emerge to challenge the Goodchild regime". The year is 2415.
So begins Aeon Flux a movie with its humble beginning on MTV as a series of cartoon shorts, which followed the tall statuesque woman with black hair and startling blue eyes, on her various missions to undermine the Goodchild regime. I think the movie should have remained a carton.
The formula was certainly right; who better to play the deadly assassin named Aeon Flux then South African beauty Charlize Theron (The Devils Advocate, The Cider House Rules, North Country)? Long, limber, and a killer in a tight jumpsuit, Ms. Theron certainly shined in the role, her first turn as a solo female action hero. And there are the other actors, principally (Oscar winner) Frances McDormand, Sophie Okonedo, and Pete Postlethwaite. But the script written around her Aeon Flux and the rest of the characters is woefully inadequate.
Directed by Karyn Kusama whose sole claim to fame before Aeon Flux was Girlfight (2000), the movie beginsafter the brief descriptionwith Aeon, a "Monican" agent for the opposition, on a mission. After that mission there is another in which Aeon is wonderfully clad in an all white jumpsuit. While she is away, her sister is murdered by the state. Aeon is sent on another mission by a siren in her head called the Handler portrayed by Frances McDormand (Hill Street Blues, Mississippi Burning, Fargo). This time she is send after one of the Goodchild brothers, Trevor portrayed by Morton Csokas (Xena: Warrior Princess, The Borne Supremacy, Kingdom of Heaven), but she chokes and is captured instead, and starts to have flashback of a former life. She is accompanied on this mission by another assassin named Sithandra portrayed by London born Sophie Okonedo (Hotel Rwanda), who has another pair of hands instead of feet (she refers to it as an enhancement). Hey it is the 25th century after all.
I have no doubt that Aeon Flux started out as a movie with good intensions, but somewhere along the way it became fatally flawed. As an action movie it is marginal at best; the fight scenes were choreographed badly, so badly that I found it hard to believe the character was actually doing any of the fighting. Most of the fight scenes were close-up shots, no doubt shot that way to cover up the fact that Ms. Theron has no martial arts abilities to speak of.
The special effects were stellar, as they always seem to be in movies like this, but the human players lack any depth at all, and thus I didnt care about any of them. There was no emotional connection to make me pay attention to the story enough to care. The movie was not unlike the carton in that it played out like a series of shorts with only a tenuous connection to the whole.
Much has been made of the fact that Paramount decided not to advance screening Aeon Flux for the press and movie critics. After watching the movie I can understand why. Taken as a whole Aeon Fluxfelt very much like one of those Sci-Fi Channel original movies I loath, albeit with much better special effects and acting, and a bit more color. And riddle me this: how can a man get shot a few times, then be alright, then get shot in the backin very dramatic fashion I might addand then get up and walk?
Ultimately Aeon Fluxis a movie to watch when there is nothing else on and you want a dose of Charlize Theron in a tight black suit, but even that gets tedious after a while, so that all youre left with is a really bad movie with a little of bullets, explosions, and bad fight scenes. And speaking of bullets, this is the 25th century, should they have progressed beyond bullets by now? Just a thought.
Principle Actors: Charlize Theron, Marton Csokas, Johnny Lee Miller, Sophie Okonedo, Frances McDormand.
Director: Karyn Kusama
Format: AC-3, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Widescreen, NTSC
Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only.
Number of Discs: (1)
Rating: PG-13 for sequences of violence and sexual content.
Studio: Paramount Home Video
DVD Release Date: April 25, 2006
Run Time: 120 Minutes
o Available Subtitles: English, Spanish
o Available Audio Tracks: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround), French (Dolby Digital 5.1)
o Commentary by: Charlize Theron and producer Gale Anne Hurd Unknown Format, co-screenwriters Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi Unknown Format
o Five featurettes: Creating a World, Locations, Stunts, Costume Design Workshop, The Craft of the Set Photographer
o Theatrical trailer
Viewing Format: DVD
Video Occasion: None of the Above
Suitability For Children: Suitable for Children Age 13 and Older
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