Final Fantasy: The Spirits
Columbia Pictures Official
Site Director: Hironobu Sakaguchi Producers: Jun Aida, Chris Lee, Akio Sakai Written by: Al Reinert, Hironobu Sakaguchi, Jeff
Vintar Cast: Alec Baldwin, Steve Buscemi, Peri Gilpin,
Ming-Na, Ving Rhames, Donald Sutherland, James Woods,
I think it was Ernest Lehman who said, at the Academy
Awards, something like, "A movie begins and ends with
a screenplay." No matter what else, a movie is only as
good as the message it has to send, Louis B. Mayer notwithstanding.
FINAL FANTASY: THE SPIRITS WITHIN is the first movie to
attempt the realistic animation of people with computer
graphics. The movie opens in the year 2065, with Dr. Aki
Ross(Ming-Na) searching the barren ruins of New York City
for a lifeform. This lifeform could be part of the key for
defeating the invading army of invisible, spirit-like aliens
whose very touch means death. The plot is ultimately less
tangible than the aliens themselves and probably not the
reason you want to see the movie.
The animation is really beautiful, but Hollywood stars
have no reason to look for day jobs just yet. Animation
as discovered in Japanime is an easy way to create a futuristic
setting or stage explosive fights, but seems to fall flat
elsewhere. The subplot involving Aki and the Deep Eyes captains
(Alec Baldwin) romantic adventures fails as the two are
unable to create any "chemistry." The movie seems
to drag along during important plot development though this
may not entirely be the animations fault.
Ultimately, for an incredibly revolutionary movie, there
is nothing new here. For the millions spent on special effects,
they could have spared a couple of bucks on scriptwriters.
Recommended as a DVD rental, so you can talk with friends
over the forgettable dialogue, yet still enjoy the eye candy,
which is an impressive taste of things to come.
Take a pal and pay full price for both tickets.
Itís worth a full-price ticket.
Itís worth a matinee ticket.
Wait for video rental.
Check out the video from the library, if you must.
While we would never encourage anyone to destroy a video...