In 2009, during development of a big screen adaptation of the book “Cloud Atlas,” The Wachowskis (The Matrix Trilogy, V For Vendetta) pitched a potential franchise titled, “Jupiter Ascending” to Warner Bros. (WB for short) influenced by Homer’s “The Odyssey,” “The Wizard Of Oz” & Alice In Wonderland” set in a sci-fi universe. The sibling duo brainstormed for four years constructing a narrative, characters, mythology, tone and themes. Filming commenced in 2013 with Mila Kunis & Channing Tatum as the main leads, Sean Bean factoring in as an ally and Eddie Redmayne signed on as the villain. After filming was completed, post-production began with the visual effects crew adding a truckload of C.G.I. Originally slated to be released on July 18th, 2014, the film was delayed to February 6, 2015, allowing the visual effects team to finish complex imagery. After a six-year gap of build-up, “Jupiter Ascending” was officially distributed worldwide.
Jupiter Ascending was released in 2015. It received negative reviews from critics and movie goers alike. To put salt in the wound, the movie bombed at the box office. Eddie Redmayne won a Golden Razzie Award for “Worst Supporting Actor.” As a result of poor reception and financial failure, The Wachowskis abandon plans to plant a sequel, killing a proposed franchise with a single entry the same fate as “Super Mario Bros.” Ang Lee’s “Hulk” The Last Airbender” & “ Fan4Stic.”
“The Matrix Resurrections” is out in theaters and streaming on HBO Max. Eddie Redmayne will reprise his role as Newt Scamander in a third installment of the “Fantastic Beasts” series.
This review contains a bunch of SPOILERS. If you’re somewhat interested in watching Jupiter Ascending, read at your own risk.
Smart & Dumb Aspects
Smart: Channing Tatum & Sean Bean both did a fair job for their respective performances.
Terry Gilliam makes a cameo appearance paying homage to a scene from “Brazil.”
One guy plays “Dark Souls.” The Wachowskis are real life gamers.
Dumb: The Wachowskis failed to give me a compelling high stakes action-adventure sci-fi epic lacking a cohesive narrative.
Eddie Redmayne’s performance as Balem is painfully bad I couldn’t take him seriously. He’s trying so hard channeling actors like Willem Dafoe as Green Goblin, Ralph Fiennes as Voldemort from Harry Potter, Benedict Cumberbatch as Khan in “Star Trek: Into Darkness” & Michael Shannon as Zod in “Man Of Steel.” The Academy Awards will never live it down giving Eddie an Oscar for “Best Actor” instead of Michael Keaton for his performance in “Birdman.” Eddie’s horrendous acting is so bad, I gotta Triple Down this con. It’s as if he took acting lessons from Tommy Wiseau. You know the same guy who made “The Room?”
Chemistry between Jupiter & Caine never made me care about them.
Every single character is forgettable. All of them lack a three-dimensional personality.
Durin his review of Jupiter Ascending, Doug Walker/Nostalgia Critic mentioned the film rips off other good movies and shows. He placed a “side pot” on how many times The Wachowskis “borrowed” from beloved works. I’ll do my best not to copy his material. So here’s my own version called, “The Rip-Off List.” Nostalgia Critic also mentioned Jupiter’s last name is Jones. He also renamed her Duck Dodgers, because he couldn’t take her name seriously. If I were him, I would’ve called her Jar Jar as in her initials J.J. Ugh! Freddie Mercury is a cool sounding name than Jupiter Jones!
The Rip-Off List
- Caine’s equipment consists of jet boots and a shield attached to his arm. Number One from “Codename: Kids Next Door” has jet boots. Odd from “Code Lyoko” has a shield on his arm.
- A chase scene in Chicago with Jupiter & Caine fleeing from spaceships looks an awful lot like The Battle Of New York City from “The Avengers.”
- Balem’s henchmen are generic brands of Grima Wormtongue (from The Lord Of The Rings Trilogy) & Killer Croc (from Batman) with wings.
- Jupiter has the power to make friends with bees. Aquaman is laughing how ridiculous it sounds.
- Grey Aliens are dollar store versions of Dren from “Splice.”
- In a cornfield, Jupiter flees from grey aliens. That’s the chase scene from “Signs.” Even the crop circles mimic the poster.
- Balem’s place looks like Padme’s palace from “Star Wars: The Phantom Menace.”
- At Balem’s place, artificial beings are genetically created. That’s the opening scene from Man Of Steel.
- Reminder, Jupiter’s last name is Jones? She’s not Indiana Jones.
- Caine saves Jupiter from getting married to Titus. “Rugrats In Paris,” “Shrek,” “Ella Enchanted” & “Wedding Crashers” have a much better “stop that wedding” scene.”
- Aliens erasing memories of people is basically stealing The Neuralizer from “Men In Black” and the obliviate spell from Harry Potter.
Stinger mentioned Jupiter’s species killed the dinosaurs. As if M. Night Shyamalan came up with this idea.
Not enough Action Sequences. Way too much exposition going from one boring conversation to another.
The Story lacks a beginning, middle and end.
Mila delivers a stupid line. “I like dogs, I always like dogs.” Screenwriting 101, make sure a sentence isn’t redundant. Imagine if Mary Jane Watson learns Peter is Spider-Man saying this sentence. “I like spiders, I always like spiders.”
Jupiter is such a moron, because she didn’t ask Caine to teach her how to learn combat skills and range attacks. She gets kidnapped three times by Kalique, Titus & Balem. If you’re kidnapped or caught in a predicament, you’re gonna have to learn to fight. Ellie from “The Last Of Us” is smarter than that tart!
The Final Verdict: F, FOR FAKER!
Jupiter Ascending is the epitome of lacking originality. As a cautionary tale for future screenwriters out there, this stinker should be used as a guide on what not to do if you wanna make a movie.