Critical Condition




After Earth Poster.jpg

Directed by M. Night Shyamalan

Produced by Caleeb Pinkett
Jada Pinkett Smith
Will Smith
James Lassiter

Screenplay by Gary Whitta
M. Night Shyamalan

Story by Will Smith

Jaden Smith
Will Smith

Music by James Newton Howard

Cinematography Peter Suschitzky

Editing by Steven Rosenblum

Studio Overbrook Entertainment
Blinding Edge Pictures
Relativity Media

Distributed by Columbia Pictures

Release date(s)

May 31, 2013 (North America and Korea)
June 7, 2013 (worldwide)

Running time 99 minutes[1]

Country United States

Language English


After Earth

Christ almighty, why do I continue to subject myself to M. Night Shyamalan movies? Perhaps itís because inwardly, I want him to improve. I want him to reach the heights he reached when he first exploded on the scene and before his obviously overblown ego got in the way. I want the guy not to suck but, for some reason, he insists on sucking.

After Earth is the latest example of his slow and painful slide into Shitsville. In it, Will Smith is a General in Space Army sometime in the future when mankind has left Earth and has gone to the stars to fuck things up there too. The Fresh General is a cold and detached man thanks to his ability to fight aliens who attack people showing emotion (no, Iím not making this up) and, on the verge of retirement, he takes a trip with his estranged son played by Jaden Smith. Of course, before they get to wherever the hell they were going, they crash in the most dangerous place everÖ EarthÖ Which is full of dangerous animals now for some goddamn reason.

Unlike the other M. Night Shyamalan movies, After Earth isnít that bad. Itís an almost passable mess as opposed to his latest feats of fuckery. It could be that heís on his way back up, or it could be that The Last Airbender must makes everything else look good by comparison. Who am I kidding? The Last Airbender makes AIDs look good by comparison.

So, After Earth is kind of sort of passable. It is by no means a good movie, but it is something tolerable. The real bitch of After Earth is that it is really not that far from being average, but Jaden Smith kills it. It must be nice to get a job by nepotism, otherwise this monotone mutant wouldnít be able to get work at a Magic Time MachineÖ as a cook.

If you donít get that joke, Google it.

Jaden Smith is so awful in this role that the human language has yet to come up with a word to adequately express his badness. To do so would be like trying to explain what the color red looks like to a blind person. Going through the movie with some of the most pathetic puppy dog eyes you ever have seen, every goddamn word that comes out of his mouth is whiney and irritating.

Will Smith, who I actually do like as an actor, doesnít do much better. Playing cold and detached is one thing, making your character an emotionless asshole is another Ė itís a choice. Perhaps Mr. Smith really wasnít in to this movie? Maybe he didnít care? Maybe he should goddamn deal with it because he makes millions of dollars a movie and should fucking try harder.

So, youíve got a story with more holes than a screen door, a leading man who doesnít appear to give two shits, and then Jaden Smith who is to acting as turtles are to auto racing. In theory, what we have is a complete disaster and, yesÖ it is a disaster, but not a complete one. After Earth is bad, but itís not a completely terrible movie. Unlike M. Nightís moronic piles of movie manure, this one at least has its moments.

The special effects are nice, itís got some okay action, and the ideas in the movie are better than average so those things save it from being a complete turd. As it stands, After Earth is a partial turd Ė a Shyamalan cinematic poop nugget.

And yeah, itís about as much fun to watch as that makes it sound.

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