Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets (2017)

In the 28th century, Valerian and Laureline are special operatives charged with keeping order throughout the human territories. On assignment from the Minister of Defense, the two undertake a mission to Alpha, an ever-expanding metropolis where species from across the universe have converged over centuries to share knowledge, intelligence, and cultures. At the center of Alpha is a mysterious dark force which threatens the peaceful existence of the City of a Thousand Planets, and Valerian and Laureline must race to identify the menace and safeguard not just Alpha, but the future of the universe.

A spectacular spectacle of a movie that faithfully adapts a French 1970s sci-fi comic book. If you think you might see it some day, you owe it to yourself to catch it in 3D on a big screen now. In a world of paint-by-numbers blockbusters, this is an invigorating slap to the eyeballs.
The flick would benefit from more focus and deliberation; often, story beats are glancing blows instead of precision hits. The biggest flaws, however, are found in the dialogue, which is at best serviceable and at times painful, probably owing to its transition through times, languages, and mediums.
Valerian isn't perfect, it's a bit clunky, but the sheer unusualness, whimsy, and wonder overpowers the movie's faults, making it well worth watching.

BNP Paribas, Belga Films, River Road Entertainment, Grive Productions, EuropaCorp, Universum Film (UFA), Fundamental Films, Gulf Film, Novo Pictures, TF1 Films Production, Orange Studio by Luc Besson, Pierre Christin, Jean-Claude Mézières.
Stars: Dane DeHaan, Cara Delevingne, Clive Owen, Rihanna.

Genres: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Sci-Fi

Keywords: shapeshifting future utopia space travel diversity based on comic alien alien planet energy alien abduction genocide parallel world political intrigue  pacifist space opera military government agent marketplace trapped in space federal government unity cosmopolis

07/20/2017

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