www.derf.net / movies / 20051023_Serenity /
<< prev in "movie reviews" movie reviews next in "movie reviews" >>

Serenity   ...   movie reviews , spoiler_low
sun 2005-oct-23 23:20:22 pdt   ...   permalink

After watching the Firefly series DVDs over the last six weeks or so, last night we went to see Serenity. It rocked.

<spoiler detail="low">

So first of all, I thought they did quite a good job of tying up the loose ends, explaining the mysteries left by the series. And impressively, they managed to do that while also creating a film that actually stands on its own -- of course I don't know what it would be like to see the movie without having watched the series, but it certainly seemed like it would be entirely coherent.

I'm entirely speculating here, so I may be completely wrong (and perhaps there's even well-known evidence to the contrary), but I kind of came away with the impression that Joss hadn't completely worked out River's whole back-story while they were doing the series, and the details about Miranda and so on were only developed while writing the screenplay for the movie. Then again, nothing that I noticed seemed to particularly contradict anything from the show, so maybe it's just a question of his having shifted gears from revealing her back-story over the course of many many hours interspersed with many other subplots, to revealing her back-story in two hours. I mean, maybe it appears that he didn't know where he was going and was just wandering, simply by virtue of the fact that he suddenly sped up, the way you might do when you suddenly spot your previously uncertain destination on the horizon.

In any case, on some level, it doesn't really matter to what extent Joss had this master plan all along; the end result was a great movie! (Insert trite simile here comparing Joss to Mal -- adapting to situations as he goes, rather than having a perfect master plan from the start ... if you like that sort of meaningless comparison.) But seriously, the story is engrossing, the humor is clever, and all that.

Really, about the only complaint I can think to make is that I would have liked it to have had more of Inara. I found her character to be one of the more intriguing characters of the series. But so it goes.

I've heard it said that, compared with the show, the movie is a lot more space and less western. This is certainly accurate. And so I suppose I can understand serious fans being upset by that change in ... tone, I guess. But in the end, I suppose I care more about story than tone. Well, no, that's not exactly it. The point is more that I thought this tone worked quite well for the story being told, and, perhaps unlike some people, I didn't feel a strong attachment to the series' tone.


Definitely highly recommended, along with the series -- even to people who are not fans of science fiction. (Of course, I suspect that a good deal of my readership is comprised of bigger sci-fi fans than me, and saw both the series and the film well before I did!)

mail me

reader comments on this entry:

tue 2005-oct-25 14:58:21 pdt
posted by

I saw the movie without seeing the series, and I also thought it was great! And I certainly didn't feel like I was hopelessly lost without knowing the backstory. The friend we went with said she knew someone who was totally confused by it, but it sounded like this was a person who was entirely unaccustomed to the tropes of science fiction and would probably have been lost in just about any sci-fi flick.

post a comment on this entry

NeilFred Picciotto drawing of neilfred
  • derf content, blog-style
  • derf's comics
  • elsewhere on the web
  • 100% true stories
  • what i learned today
  • random thoughts
  • movie reviews
  • He Loves Me... He Loves Me Not
  • Serenity
  • Panic
  • Run Lola Run
  • Vertigo
  • Primer
  • . . . more . . .
  • phone photos
  • blog-on-blog action
  • tags
  • RSS feed
  • XFN links
  • recent comments
  • 2008-sep-22
  • Britt Lyons on food handler
  • Conrad Pate on singing nuns
  • Suzy on people live in West Virginia?
  • Quinn Rutledge on chickens
  • Jacquline Gamble on garlic rabbit
  • 2008-sep-21
  • Lenora Gomez on garlic rabbit
  • 2008-sep-20
  • Jonas Bailey on food handler
  • Lenny Ayers on chickens
  • random phone photo random phone photo
  • non-bloggy content
  • the derf himself
  • the derf FAQ
  • other derfs
  • what's new?
  • the derfnet portal
  • derf's comics
    blogs and such
  • Q
  • entropy
  • girlhacker
  • ambiguous
  • oblomovka
  • sem101
  • badgerbag
  • zephoria
  • pith, jcn
  • jvg
  • unlikely words
  • mjr
  • jessajune
  • heaneyland
  • dommah
  • unwellness
  • livejournalers
  • ...  all derf.net blog content and underlying code owned by NeilFred Picciotto  ...
    mail me