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Another Earth

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Another Earth - 11/1/2013 2:58:32 PM   
Empire Admin


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Moving and thought provoking - 11/1/2013 2:58:32 PM   
The Bendys


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I felt that there was something about this film that just kept you interested. I couldn't quite put my finger on it, but I felt like it was getting a little boring, yet I was fascinated by what would eventually happen. I also think it's a film where you're constantly asking yourself and thinking about the question - what would you do if you could see yourself from the outside? What would you say to yourself? What would you see? What would you want to see? All these hypothetical questions and situations you may not have thought about before are now flooding your brain.

If I were to recommend this film to someone, I would tell them that it is a little bit boring, but you have to persevere with it and wait until the end, because then all the questions come at once.

I also quite liked the fact that you weren't completely bombarded by the baffling made-up science behind the second earth, because it made it simple. A Sci-fi movie, but not in-your-face Sci-fi

I think overall, a very good, interesting and thought-provoking watch.

(in reply to Empire Admin)
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RE: Moving and thought provoking - 16/1/2013 1:00:04 PM   

Posts: 185
Joined: 25/7/2006
Yes I agree with the previous comment. I watched this and although not 'hooked' I was 'interested' in the story it was telling and the way they told it was quite subtle. It didnt try to explain reasons as to why the earth 2 was just was...and the people in the film had all the same questions as the viewer. Interesting stuff, and the last scene made me think quite a lot about it afterwards..
Because ...highlight....The way it was leading based on the first contact was, that everyone on earth 2 had lead the exact same lives. Yet Rhoda choose to give her ticket to John on earth one, but at the end she meets something different has occured...

I liked it 3 stars. Worth a go and only 80 odd mins long so even if its a little slow, its over quite quickly.


How far would you go to get your answers? What would you be willing to do?

(in reply to The Bendys)
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RE: Moving and thought provoking - 16/1/2013 4:14:50 PM   
Dr Lenera


Posts: 4084
Joined: 19/10/2005

Rhoda Williams is a high school student fascinated by Astronomy who has been recently accepted to MIT [Massachusetts Institute Of Technology]. She celebrates with friends and drives home intoxicated. Listening to a story on the radio about an approaching planet that looks just like Earth, she looks out her car window up to the stars and inadvertently slams her car through a stopped car at an intersection, putting John Burroughs in a coma and killing his wife and son. After serving her six year prison sentence, Rhoda becomes a school cleaner and visits John to apologise, but loses her nerve and instead poses as a maid offering a free day of cleaning. Meanwhile people are fighting to get on to the space ship that will visit Earth 2 [as they call it] and there is a competition offering free ticketsÖÖÖÖÖ

Another Earth is a film that will probably frustrate a great many people. Though certainly Ďscience fictioní, itís more of a human drama with metaphysical and philosophical elements, with the science fiction as a background for much of the film. Itís also something of a puzzler which will probably make you scratch your head for quite a while. The closest movie this year I can compare it to is the similarly polarizing Tree Of Life, though of course Another Earth is a very tiny budget movie by comparison. There were moments where I got a little frustrated with the film, but overall, if you have patience and donít expect lots of action, special effects etc., you may find it quite rewarding. I came out of the cinema thinking intently about what I had seen, and, though I think the movie could have been better in some areas, I have a feeling that it will stay with me and will me even more rewarding on a second viewing.

Of course the idea of two people becoming close, one unaware the other did them a grevious wrong, is hardly a new concept; Bounce, Stuck and others have dealt with it, but this movie does it with a great deal of reality; you really believe the characters and their actions. You know there is eventually going to be the scene where Rhoda tells all to John, but Johnís reaction is totally believable. I will say that much of this moves at a snailís pace, and I wanted more of the film to be about the ĎEarth 2í sub-plot, but never mind, I admire the writer/director Mike Cahill and his co-writer Brit Marling [who also stars] for ignoring expectations and having the guts to give us a very European-style human drama channelling the works of filmmakers like Krzysztof Kieslowski and Andrei Tarkovsky more than any American director. The matter of Earth 2 might be more in the background, but itís still there, often literally. We spend much time with Rhoda outdoors, thinking, and the planet always looms in the background down at her, like God, watching from the Heavens, judging this human being who committed a dreadful act and is trying to atone for it. Eventually we have the obligatory Ďcontactí scene, and Iíll be damned if it isnít one of the creepiest scenes of the year.

Throughout, the movie has a dreamlike feel. The camera is often following Rhoda right up behind her, handheld and jerking. At other times itís looking down at her from above. Scenes often employ disorientating editing. Despite itís often intimate feel, Another Earth employs a wider range of cinema techniques than many other films Iíve seen this year and more experimentation. Eventually the story does reach a kind of climax, and sorry to say we never actually get to see Earth 2, or should I say never think we do, because there are many possible interpretations to the film and yours is probably just as valid as mine. In any case, the probable keeping of Earth 2 in our heads works best for the movie, because our minds can conjure up things in a way a film often just cannot match. he tale seems to partially resolve itself it, bringing forward the theme of redemption and adding one of self-sacrifice, and then, we have a completely puzzling ending. What does it mean? How you interpret it probably depends on whether you prefer to go for the scientific or the philosophical.

Brit Marlin is simply sensational in the lead role; she seems to have a very fresh, naturalistic acting style, often letting just a subtle expression speak more far more than any heavy emoting, and I think she will be a big star in the future. Co-star William Mapother seems a bit too creepy throughout. A big plus in Another Earth is the score by the band Fall On Your Sword, ranging from traditional Ďclassicalí type scoring to techno-y ambient sounds, with several particular instruments, such as organ, guitar and violin, seemingly used to emphasise certain situations or re-occurring elements. Thereís one really puzzling scene where John plays Rhoda really strange sounds with a violin bow and a buzz saw, and she seems to have images of a kind which I wonít describe but may be visions, or even flashbacks? There are other things which didnít really work for me. A brief sex scene is just laughable, while I didnít understand the role of the Indian co-worker, though it seems to have been important. The grain of some shots jarred with the beauty of others, though itís possible that could not have been avoided. The more I think about this movie as I write this review though, the more I like it. Itís affecting and even powerful in a curiously understated way, and I expect truly great things from Cahill in the future.



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