In the litany of unfairly maligned directors, the Wachowskis – Lana and Andy – are perhaps right below Oscar winner Sam Mendes on the unfairly long list. For some reason, be it the brilliant ‘Matrix’ movies, the effervescent eye candy of ‘Speed Racer,’ their early masterwork ‘Bound,’ or their collaboration with Tom Tykwer, the outstanding ‘Cloud Atlas,’ they are typically slagged off because – well, because not everyone found Parts 2 and 3 of their Keanu Reeves starring bullet time testament all that compelling. Like Zack Snyder, they are dismissed as style over substance though both the ‘Matrix‘ movies and ‘Cloud Atlas‘ were beyond thought provoking. Their latest, ‘Jupiter Ascending,’ probably won’t change many minds, but from the looks of the first trailer, The Wachowskis clearly know how to deliver quite a bang for their umpteen millions of studio bucks.
Now, trailer number two has arrived and it gives us more storyline and more subtext. Apparently, Mila Kunis is a half-human, half-alien member of royalty meant to rule the Earth. This makes Balem the King (Eddie Redmayne) all kinds of angry as…well, seems like he has his sights set on the third planet from the Sun as well. So does his wife, The Queen. Channing Tatum is the genetically mutated warrior – half-man, half-wolf – sent to kill Jupiter initially. Then, he decides to protect Ms. Kunis from harm. With Sean Bean and James D’Arcy in key roles, this looks great. And the latest preview really pours on the “wow” factor. Take a look for yourself:
As a major Wachowski apologist, all I can say is “YES, PLEASE!” I thought ‘Cloud Atlas‘ was the best of 2012, and if this movie has half of that film’s ambition, we could have another ‘Star Wars’ on our hands. Since it’s not based on anything except the siblings’ fervent imaginations, it’s hard to say if today’s comic/superhero/YA/sequel/prequel/franchise happy audiences will show up. Seems like there’s enough Summer splash here to warrant Warners’ mid-July release date. Hopefully, these amazing filmmakers live up to their real reputation, not the flawed fanboy analysis of their aesthetic value.