Director : Luc Besson

Producer(s) : Luc Besson and Virginie Besson-Silla

Main Cast : Dane DeHaan, Cara Delevingne, Clive Owen, Rihanna, Ethan Hawke, Herbie Hancock, Kris Wu and Rutger Hauer

Genre : Sci-Fi

Release Date : July 20, 2017

Music Director : Alexandre Desplat

Awesome-O-Metre : 5.0/10


Based on the French sci-fi comics called Valérian and Laureline, Valerian and The City Of A Thousand Planets is set in the 28th Century on the human and alien space settlement called Alpha. However, when the settlement is threatened by an unknown force deep within its core, it is up to Valerian (Dane DeHaan ) and Laureline (Cara Delevingne ) the two man team of the human elite force to get to the bottom of the matter and save the settlement from extinction.

Who else can be trusted to bring this comic series to life other than Luc Besson who everyone remembers for the movie The Fifth Element? And just like Fifth Element, Luc Besson creates a eccentric futuristic world of Alpha with some really weird looking aliens and visually resplendent world with some magnificent imagery.  With a budget of about $230m I expected this film to go over the top with rich imagery and extensive use of CGI and that was exactly what I got. Your eyes will almost pop out of your head trying to see all the flashy and colourful goings on in the film.

Unfortunately, the forgoing is basically all the film had going for it, everything else was quite frankly subpar. The actors seemed to lack any real quality because in all honestly, I didn’t understand the relationship between Valérian and Laureline. They were supposed to be romantically involved but the lack of chemistry and lifelessness left me more confused than enthralled. The choice of Clive Owen as Arün Filitt seemed like a misfit to me, the selection was rather odd to be honest. Of course, we must mention Rihanna as Bubble, a shape shifting performer whose performance was decent, I am sure the Rihnavy will be content with their pinup in such a big role.

Another shortcoming of the film was the plot. There wasn’t anything gripping in the film as it just seemed to trudge along with no real direction and even the conflict resolution was quite anti-climatic. You should have seen the audience at the cinema (myself included) who were restless to leave but couldn’t, not because the film was good but because they paid good money to see it and having to sit there for almost 2 hours seemed more like a chore than entertainment.

This may be coming a little early in the year but this film has a shout for one of the most underwhelming films for this year. I had the same unfulfilled feeling seeing Valerian and The City of a Thousand Planets as I did Jupiter Ascending… but maybe that’s just me.

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The Maveriq


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