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January 7, 2016 at 5:25 am #206615
In 2017, Steven Spielberg returns to sci-fi with the upcoming adaptation of the novel Ready Player One. Olivia Cooke (Me and Earl and the Dying Girl) is currently set to star while Ben Mendelsohn (TV’s Bloodline) is apparently in negotiations to play the main villain.
Here’s the synopsis:
In the year 2044, reality is an ugly place. The only time teenage Wade Watts really feels alive is when he’s jacked into the virtual utopia known as the OASIS. Wade’s devoted his life to studying the puzzles hidden within this world’s digital confines—puzzles that are based on their creator’s obsession with the pop culture of decades past and that promise massive power and fortune to whoever can unlock them.
But when Wade stumbles upon the first clue, he finds himself beset by players willing to kill to take this ultimate prize. The race is on, and if Wade’s going to survive, he’ll have to win—and confront the real world he’s always been so desperate to escape.January 7, 2016 at 9:59 pm #206617
I am sold on anything Steven Spielberg.
FYC: Ready Player One. Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, Visual Effects, Original Score, Production Design, Director and BEST PICTURE (make it happen Oscars!!)March 12, 2018 at 3:17 am #1202511850
Two reviews on RT thus far, one fresh, one rotten.March 26, 2018 at 7:47 pm #1202519584
Just saw an early screening. I went into this film with zero expectations (not really into video games anymore and Spielberg hasn’t impressed me as of late).
This film took me by surprise in such a refreshing and imaginative way. The visual effects are stunning and I am calling this now as the Best Visual Effects at the Oscars. To make the video game world look so realistic was an amazing feat.
Also, this was the most daring role I’ve seen Mark Rylance take, and it almost makes me forgive him from stealing the Oscar his year. His character could EASILY have his own stand alone film and I’d be the first in line to see it.
The 80s music and pop culture references were so much fun and there are so many easter eggs for video gamers in this movie its mind boggling.
Spielberg should really stick to these kinds of films because he is amazing at bringing nostalgia to life on screen.
Definitely in my Top 3 of new releases this year along with Hostiles and Love Simon.March 30, 2018 at 8:28 pm #1202521937
This was bad.March 30, 2018 at 10:48 pm #1202521951
It’s a so-so for me. The visual effects are amazing and the movie noticeably picks up once they get the plot going, but there’s too much exposition at the start with the main character having to tell a story that establishes the worldbuilding which isn’t the best choice and gets frustrating and boring really fast. They never really establish what a Loyalty Center is till too late in the movie so Artemis’ pained speech about her father kinda falls flat cuz you just don’t know what the hell she is talking about. And after giving you the sense that IOI rules the world and there’s no police presence, suddenly the police pops out of no where to remind that nope, law enforcement do exist. Surprise!
On the other hand, the cast has very good chemistry and I was into the egg hunt and how they solved the clues. The part about the Shining was a highlight and they managed to inject some funny anecdotes that worked really well. Overall, I enjoyed it enough as a light adventure movie but it’s no masterpiece or a standout movie.March 30, 2018 at 11:13 pm #1202521957
I will be seeing this next week probably as my weekend is booked solid. But I am really anticipating this.
FYC: Ready Player One in every category.
FYC: Ready Player One. Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, Visual Effects, Original Score, Production Design, Director and BEST PICTURE (make it happen Oscars!!)March 31, 2018 at 6:51 am #1202522093
Ok so saw this yesterday and honestly I liked it but I was disappointed at the same time. The Shining part was the only part I would say wowed me. My grade: C+April 1, 2018 at 10:33 am #1202522503
My two cents…
Ah, arcades. Growing up, I couldn’t get enough of them. Sure, on our family trips to the likes of Hampton Beach and Lake George, I enjoyed soaking up the sun and frolicking in the water but it was really those stops at the nearby arcades that most floated my boat. Pinball, Skee-Ball, shooting galleries, video games – these and more provided me with heaps of entertainment, especially (no surprise) the movie/TV-themed offerings, like the Phantom of the Opera and Twilight Zone pinball machines.
In terms of delivering thrills, Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One operates on about the same level as an arcade. It isn’t the most sophisticated of offerings – and surely isn’t top-tier Spielberg – but still mostly succeeds as a jolly, stimulating romp, only petering out a bit with about a half hour to go. (After all, even for an arcade nut, two hours and twenty minutes straight spent in one would be a bit much.)
The picture, based on Ernest Cline’s eponymous novel, finds earth on the verge of collapse in the year 2045. Providing the human race a much-needed distraction is OASIS, a virtual reality universe created by the oddball James Halliday (Mark Rylance). Following his death, Halliday devised a tricky three-part contest for people worldwide which, if somehow won, would provide the lucky champion with Halliday’s fortune and exclusive control over OASIS.
Among those competing for this glory is Wade Watts (Tye Sheridan), a young wannabe-hero who has closely studied Halliday’s past in search of clues to help unlock the mysteries to triumphing in this treasure hunt. After Wade emerges the first conqueror of part one of the contest, he collaborates with friends – the self-proclaimed High Five – on the dizzying journey to acing the remaining two parts. Hellbent on preventing his success is deranged businessman Nolan Sorrento (Ben Mendelsohn), who has a vast fleet of troops determined to steamroll the High Five and claim victory.
Especially in the early-going, Ready Player One completely delivers the goods. Visually, the proceedings are truly awe-inspiring, with Spielberg staging several exciting set pieces and Mendelsohn, per usual, in brilliant, scene-stealing form. The incessant pop culture references are hit-or-miss but, without delving into spoilers, let’s just say fans of ’80s horror cinema are bound to have a fabulous time.
Acting-wise, the performances range from exceptional (Mendelsohn) to serviceable (Sheridan and leading lady Olivia Cooke) to atrocious (Rylance). Of course, in a CGI-packed extravaganza like this, acting prowess isn’t squarely on the brain. The thing is, the visual effects too wind up rather uneven, genuinely spectacular in the first half but more chaotic and haphazard as the picture reaches its conclusion. There’s one especially wild battle that draws characters from a plethora of past films and shows but the staging is so disorderly, Spielberg fails to much utilize them – odd, since the cost of obtaining rights to these figures could not have been cheap.
My qualms aside, I did have a blast with Ready Player One. It’s admittedly one of those pictures you have a rollicking good time with…and then perhaps reflect back on it, questioning if it’s really all that great. I do think it has its shares of flaws – in the Spielberg canon, I’d be pressed to rank it alongside Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, also fun but in the most supremely silly way – but there are certainly more boring, less satisfying ways to spend nearly two and half hours. Also, it’s the sort of stunning film that demands to be seen on a big screen. Don’t wait for Netflix.
COMING SOON to The Awards Connection: The 100 Greatest Oscar-Nominated PerformancesApril 2, 2018 at 6:34 am #1202522844
Not understanding the hate I’m seeing here, not at all.
Also, I saw this again yesterday and decided that no other film should win the sound categories at the Oscars based on the race cars scene alone. I can’t believe what they can do with visual effects and sound these days. Absolutely unbelievable.
I’d love to see Spielberg direct a John Hughes-esq film, as I think he is incredible with directing young actors.April 2, 2018 at 11:23 pm #1202523337
Spielberg’s return to blockbuster filmmaking hits all the right marks visually – the first and last 20 minutes are particularly spectacular. However, the film is bogged down by its ad nauseam name-dropping (and I get that it was intentionally uber-nostalgic but its references felt shoehorned in half the time – and don’t get me started on the gag-worthy product placement). And while Ty Sheridan and Olivia Cooke are competent as the leads, neither really blew me away, which is in large part due to the lack of character development and paper-thin plot. There is some satisfying world building here and there, and Rylance’s performance is quite endearing, but it would be a considerable stretch to call this a return to form for the legendary director. Liked it, didn’t love it.
Grade: BApril 3, 2018 at 9:45 pm #1202523855
I will say this much, I just got back from seeing it.
In terms of sheer creativity and imagination, this is one of my absolute favourites. It’s larger-than-life, exhilarating and deserves nominations and wins for Sound categories and Visual Effects and Original Score, but it also deserves Production Design, Film Editing, Director and of course Best Picture.
Steven Spielberg made a new blockbuster for a new generation that is bold and amazing. Not everything about it worked 100%, but I think it’s incredible.
And for anyone who says that this movie is bad, let me just say that (spoilers) you have a scene where The Iron Giant attacks Godzilla! Your argument’s invalid.
FYC: Ready Player One. Sound Editing, Sound Mixing, Visual Effects, Original Score, Production Design, Director and BEST PICTURE (make it happen Oscars!!)April 4, 2018 at 7:19 am #1202523991
Rylance’s performance was something at first I really was concerned about, but in the end it all came together and I was in love!
Tye Sheridan has some room to grow but he reminds me of a young DiCaprio. He needs to team up with Scorsese ASAP.
Cooke I was most disappointed with because I’ve seen her do WAY better. She gave herself a character voice (I know that’s half the performance) and just let that be her performance. I really saw no crafting and just she’s a “gamer girl” and that was it.
Lena Waithe was great. She also has a lot of room to grow, but I want to keep seeing her on screen.
Did Mendelsohn have fake teeth? He had two really amazing scenes. He made me want to see him as The Grinch instead of Cumberbatch
“Someone is staring at you in ‘Personal Growth’.”
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