Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Johnny Mnemonic

I never watched this movie.  I remember the trailer with Keanu Reeves asking if somebody ordered a pizza & showing some crappy computer graphics & so even though it was written by William Gibson I had no interest in it.  I worked at a video store when it came out with its gimmicky transparent box & orange videocassette, so I could’ve seen it for free at any point & still didn’t bother.  Part of it was I’d seen Hackers & thought it was pretty awful & showed what Hollywood thought sci-fi was about – shitty graphics.  Also I never really liked any movies that Reeves was in with the possible exception of Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure (more recently I have grown to respect Point Break & apparently I’m the only person who likes Constantine).

Over the years this has been one of those movies (like Tron) that everybody is surprised I never saw.  Well, this is no Tron.  While I wasn’t super into Tron, it had a cool look & a world of it’s own.  There’s a problem I have with most Hollywood sci-fi movies & especially the dystopian variety & this movie is filled with it.  They try to make a movie with dirt & grit to it, but everything is polished & the dirt strategically placed.  It’s what makes a movie like Johnny Mnemonic harder to give a suspension of disbelief than say Cyborg.  & then there’s the CGI.  If your movie is going to rely on state of the art special effects, your movie might be okay that day (in my opinion it usually still sucks on opening day, I hated Avatar, though I oddly have a great affection for Roughnecks: Starship Trooper Chronicles), but it will definitely be crap a few years down the line.  I do always get a kick out of seeing Ice T in a movie, so that was nice, but even he didn't make the movie fun.  I do like that there isn’t a love story going on (I’m surprised they didn’t throw that in actually).  Really I think one of the problems is this tries to cram too much into one movie.  It half explains a bunch of things without actually explaining or exploring anything.  I think this movie would work better without the epic over-arcing story of Reeves saving the world from a plague.  It’s like they took one okay movie & a pretty crappy sequel & merged them into one not very good movie. & what the fuck is the dolphin about?  If you’ve managed to avoid this movie so far, stay away.

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