Ultraviolet just stole 90 minutes of my life
Where's Leeloo when you need her?
Okay, so I'd heard not-so-flattering things about Kurt Wimmer's Ultraviolet and I have a morbid curiosity about bad movies (remind me to tell you what I think about Catwoman one day, okay?) so this week I finally watched it.
Going in, I didn't have high expectations but here's what it had going for it:
- Milla Jovovich as a sexy, donkey kicking heroinne
- A mutating virus
- Did I mention Jovovich?
Replace Vampires with Zombies, and you have the Resident Evil movies. Now, I'm not saying they're great, but there are times that's what I'm in the mood for and they scratch an itch for me.
This turd, however ... doesn't.
The movie follows a woman (Milla Jovovich) named Violet (*nudge* *nudge* get it? Because the movie's called Ultra ... eh, never mind) who, the opening narration tells us, once had a husband and a baby on the way. (The baby was on the way. She already had the husband.) But then she got sick with a virus that turns regular humans into what they refer to as "hemophages". Basically, Vampires. Not traditional vampires, but at least they don't sparkle in the sun.
Violet is sent to retrieve a "weapon" that turns out to be a young boy named Six (Cameron Bright). Apparently there's something in his blood that might either cure or kill the hemophages.
I had serious flashbacks to the third X-Men movie about that. Especially since (a) both movies came out in 2006 and (b) Cameron Bright also played the mutant Leach who's blood provided the "cure" for mutants.
Now, I can understand and respect that the film makers were intentionally trying to make a movie that looked literally like a live-action graphic novel. A bit odd since this is an original story by writer/director Kurt Wimmer, who actually wrote the part of Violet with Jovovich in mind. The problem--and maybe it's a bigger problem for me than others--is that the movie stinks.
Overall, they seem to feel that it's okay to just spray a bunch of random images onto a screen, vomit out a sprinkling (eeew) of character development, assault your audience's eyes and ears with loud colors and noises, then stand back and look at your work smugly.
There are moments here and there where I start to think "Okay, here we go. This oughta be ... what?" Yeah, before I can even complete the thought, I'm disappointed. There are several special effects that are just absolutely laughable and the fight scenes have so much going on that you can't even work up a real care-what's-happening.
Now, I understand that there was a longer version (about 120 minutes) that the studio had pared down because they wanted something that would focus more on the action than the characters, but the result here is that you just don't care about any of the characters. And if I'm going to watch someone important to the movie almost die, I'd darn well better care about them.
Now, from time to time, I was reminded of The Fifth Element. It makes sense. Both star Jovovich. Both have very unique world views. Both have a very artistic flair to how they were designed and filmed. But at least I am entertained for much of The Fifth Element. It's not a perfect movie, but there's humor while this one takes itself waaaaay to seriously. The action and effects are more believeable. And it has Bruce Willis.
Now, admittedly, that last one isn't a guarantee of a good movie, but it certainly don't hurt.
Anyway, if you've seen this one, you have my sympathies. If you haven't seen it, please, don't bother. That is, unless you're like me and have a morbid curiosity about bad movies.
(Personally, I'm an aspiring author and I find I can learn a whole lot by seeing how others have completely ruined their own films.)
I give this one 4 / 10.
Ultraviolet is rated PG-13 for violence, language, and female nudity.
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