Review of the Movie Serenity

"They will try again... they will swing back to the belief that they can make people better” (Serenity). This is the premise of the movie Serenity, written and directed by Joss Whedon. The government has hidden a powerful secret from the universe. For over a decade, the weight this secret holds over the population has been gaining momentum . The secret has become powerful to a point where exposing it will open floodgates and tear through the realities of all those not expecting the truth. It is not until a group of bandits, sheltering a psychic and her brother, stumble upon a lost world that the truth is revealed.

Serenity is a truly groundbreaking movie. The use of superior special effects and controlling camera angles gives the viewer a clear visualization of the story as it unfolds. While aesthetically Serenity is stimulating, the action sequences continue to amaze as they are logical, well thought out, and easy to follow. Although the actual story behind the movie is not revealed until late in the plot, the viewer never feels as though they are missing something. There is a natural progression to the climax and the revealing of the secret. The film is a continuation of a science fiction television series called Firefly, which was canceled in early 2003.

After Firefly was canceled, it was released on DVD. Sales went through the roof, and the series gained a cult following. Whedon has stated that he will not resume writing the series, nor will he grant the rights to anyone else. Though he refuses to continue the television series, he did work in collaboration with Universal Pictures to create the motion picture now known as Serenity (released 2006).

Following a cult series is usually hard to do, but leaving room for new fans is even harder. Making Serenity understandable to those not familiar with Firefly was a difficult challenge for Whedon. At the same time, he had to engage the older fans with a fast moving video that picks up where the series left off.

Watching Malcolm Reynolds, played by Nathan Fillion, stand up amongst his crew and say, “I aim to misbehave,” has to be one of the most influential images from any movie. As the screen closes in on Malcolm, you feel as though Fillion has truly become the character and is out to overthrow a corrupted government. My heart skipped a beat as I thought, “Something big is coming.” At the time, I didn’t have enough foresight to see what was about to happen, but I knew I was going to like it. What ensued was one of the largest and best done Sci-fi spatial combat scenes. It was equal to the Star War's “Death Star Trench Run” with a special sort of comedy that only Whedon could invent.

"If your quarry goes to ground leave no ground to go to” (Serenity). The quote captures the mentality of the Parliament’s agent who was sent to kill River Tam, the psychic onboard the ship. He is one of the greatest characters from film or literature. The agent is reminiscent of Javert, from Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables, in the sense that he sees in black and white (right and wrong). His goal is to make a better world. In his words, he hopes to create, “A world without sin.” Perhaps this is true of many characters. What makes The Agent unique is that he doesn’t want to live in this “perfect” world, but he is ready to die so that others can. Unfortunately, that means controlling the thoughts and actions of people -- something that free bird Malcolm is not okay with.

Over all, the movie was extremely well done. There were comedic elements, a romance, a good bit of powerhouse action, and some great gizmos and gadgets. The acting was phenomenal starring the original cast of Firefly. This film is one that will leave you wondering about our own lives and will stay with you forever.

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