Serenity

Movie Review by Nigel A. Messenger

Starring: Nathan Fillion, Gina Torres, Alan Tudyk, Morena Baccarin, Adam Baldwin

Director: Joss Whedon

SERENITY is an action/adventure sci-fi movie from writer/director Joss Whedon and in case you don’t finish reading this review I’ll tell you right now it is a truly great movie.

Joss Whedon will probably be better known to you as the creator of the hugely popular television series BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER and its spin-off ANGEL, but as all Whedon fans will know towards the end of those series he turned his attentions to making the TV series FIREFLY. Now FIREFLY didn’t get the attention it deserved and got cancelled before the end of its first season. Personally I loved the show although even I didn’t actually watch it when it was first broadcast but instead watched the DVD box set. So why the history lesson…because SERENITY is the continuation of the FIREFLY TV series!

Now if you didn’t watch FIREFLY – don’t worry because SERENITY can be enjoyed in its own right although I’m sure you’ll be so impressed you will be off to buy the FIREFLY box set as soon as you leave the cinema. SERENITY is actually the name of the Firefly class spaceship, which is home to Mal (Nathan Fillion) the captain and his small crew, who really live more like a family. They exist just outside of the law earning a living mainly as smugglers moving cargo between the many planets colonized by humans from Earth – there are no aliens in this story as apparently no one has found any yet! There is a government, the Alliance, who were the victors in a civil war in which the captain and one of the crew Zoe (Gina Torres) were on the losing side. It is this Alliance who is tracking River (Summer Glau) who lives on board the Serenity and will stop at nothing to get her as she has previously been the subject of a long-term experiment in developing a human weapon. The Alliance is also afraid River will regain her memories and reveal a dark secret that could destabilize their power.

There is so much going on in SERENITY I feel I am in danger of making it sound confusing but it is not at all because the story is so well written and thought out that the film just seems to flow naturally.

As well as a great story there is loads of action all the way through and it’s cleverly interspersed with plenty of humorous witty dialogue to lighten the load.

The movie delivers if you just want to enjoy an action/adventure, but it also delivers if you are seriously into sci-fi.

SERENITY is the film that STAR WARS and others like it try to be. While many millions of us enjoy STAR WARS we can see faults in the acting, script and over simplified storylines. SERENITY however is just about as good as a movie can get in every respect – directing, story, acting, script and even excellent special effects.

If the series FIREFLY was practice then SERENITY is the real deal. It’s a great movie – one of the movies of the decade for me – and a sensational piece of sci-fi. Joss Whedon – you HAVE to make this into a franchise.

6 out of 6 stars

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