LIFE Magazine changed how the world saw itself.
Ben Stiller worked for LIFE Magazine in The Secret LIFE of Walter Mitty.
LIFE Breakfast cereal taught us that if Mikey could eat it, we could too.
Hasbro’s The Game of LIFE was a board game we had when we were children. It had a spin top in the middle of the board. My sister would always win.
These things all bring fond memories to me. They all make me smile. Which brings us to the movie I saw last night…
SPOILER ALERT: if you don’t want to know about the movie, then stop reading a movie review about it.
LIFE is a movie staring Ryan Reynolds and Jake Gyllenhaal.
The entire movie takes place on the International Space Station with a group of astronauts who are studying soil samples which have been brought back from Mars. A single cell alien life form is discovered in the soil. This alien begins to grow larger and larger and eventually it begins to attack and kill the crew… which is the selling point and why I came to this movie.
You will remember Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool and the Green Lantern: two superhero movies which make up both extremes of the bell curve of quality for superhero movies: total garbage to epic winning. I was hoping his dark edgy humor would shine and bring quippy one liners.
Jake Gyllenhaal has brought us such impactful characters as Donnie Darko and the reporter in Nightcrawler. I was hoping with these guys in the same room and a deadly alien attacking them to be an epic twisting mind-f**k with some dirty humor sprinkled in and some great special effects.
Here are a list of hastags which are appropriate for describing this movie:
The first scene shows Ryan Reynolds being prepped for a space walk. He has to use the CanadArm on the ISS to “catch” a satellite returning to earth from Mars. It did not make any sense for him to make the space walk to use the CanadArm. Why did he have to leave the ISS to catch the satellite? The physics of the ISS “catching” a satellite are nonsensical, but MOVIE. Right? OK. Let’s move on.
The alien comes from the Mars dirt and attacks the black guy. Typical. Ryan Reynolds then goes for a flame thrower. Of course he does. It makes perfect sense to have a flame thrower on the ISS. The alien then crawls into Ryan Reynolds mouth and eats him from the inside. It is the most awesome moment of the movie as he begins to vomit CGI blood and there is no gravity. How would you clean that? How do you mop in zero gravity?
The entire rest of the movie is the other nameless characters, none of which have been set up so that we even care about them, cry about things, then get eaten by CGI Space Herpes. (Ice Pirates reference. Goggle it. The 1980’s were awesome.)
There have been very few movies I have walked out on because they were unwatchable, (Mobsters with Christian Slater was the first) but I came close with this one. It is devoid of any emotion even though quite a few scenes are devoted to people dealing with emotional stuff. There is a scene where they all sit at a table for what seems to be a meal, which makes no sense in a place with no gravity. I was distracted by all of the actors swaying and trying to look like they were floating and the dialogue was lost to me. I kept thinking about the diatribe of endless tasteless one liners Ryan Reynolds must be saying. I wanted to see the blooper reel worse than I wanted to see the rest of this movie. No time was spent establishing characters, so when they each have their overly elaborate death scenes I just didn’t care.
It is frustrating to watch a bad movie. This one just seemed to plug on and on. They end up the ISS is destroyed and the remaining two astronauts have no other choice than one of them luring the alien into the one escape pod and going off into space, and the other astronaut going into the other escape pod and going to Earth. The twist is that the pods get mixed up and the alien gets to earth and we all get space herpes.
I have a popcorn addiction, and I often say I will sit through a bad movie to eat good popcorn. There is no amount of popcorn that could make this a good movie. It is just crap. Bad crap.
I suggest that you rent Alien, Deadpool, Gravity or Ice Pirates instead of watching this movie.