After abandoning Earth a thousand years ago Raige and his young son, Kitai, crash land on the now overgrown and wild planet. With Raige seriously injured and close to death, Kitai must travel alone and on foot to find a beacon which can save them both from dying alone.
Will Smith (Raige), Jaden Smith (Kitai), Sophie Okonedo (Faia), Zoe Kravitz (Senshi), Glenn Morshower (Velan), Kristofer Hivju (Security).
After Earth is a bit confusing at the start as the timeline skips around a bit. After that the film gives us some better background and character development. Once Raige and Kitai crash land the story takes on a different tone with an interesting mix of action, suspense, and drama. The film draws audience investment throughout, finally finishing with a reasonably done happy ever after ending.
Acting was interesting in After Earth. Will Smith put a lot of energy into presenting as a hard and tough military type. He landed some of it but for the most part it felt fake and somewhat out of character. Jaden Smith felt a bit out of place in the beginning but was doing much better by the end of the film. The remainder of the supporting cast was solid and did a fair job.
Camera work, sets, and backgrounds were all pretty good. CGI, which was hard to distinguish from other backgrounds at times, blended nicely and was well done with only a couple of overdone scenes. Physical effects were also good with nice blending. Dialogue wasn't just good, but necessary, for the film to be as good as it was. Sound and soundtrack were okay.
Overall After Earth is a conceptually interesting sci-fi story while this translation to the big screen focused more on the action and suspense. Those who enjoy their sci-fi with a side of something else will enjoy this the most, as will those who enjoy a good action sci-fi. Those who are hoping for a heavy dose of sci-fi will be a bit disappointed.
With sci-fi action and some disturbing images this should be fine for teens and above.
copyright ©2013 Dave Riedel
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