Friday, April 13, 2018

Ready Player One 2018

It's been awhile, but I finally went to see a Steven Spielberg film in the theater which I have not done since 2008.   Don't get me wrong I did see "Lincoln" and "Bridges of Spies", but on cable and at home.  Spielberg's films are masterful, and when seen on the big screen you know why he is such a consummate director.  Spielberg's visuals are breathtaking, and he knows how to tell a good story.  He has been a favorite of mine since I was a teen and saw a picture of him filming when he was a teen.  It's taken me awhile for me to get excited about a movie, and I have to confess my boys were more excited seeing this film then I was.  After all it's about gaming, and what teen doesn't game?

The movie is 40% live action, and the rest is CGI, and animation, but Spielberg blends the two so well it's hard to see where the line is drawn.  Since the movie is about a fantasy place called the Oasis, and the reality of a bleak future I think Spielberg does a fantastic job showing the different worlds.

The movie is all about pop culture of the past, and how Spielberg interweaves the two is fascinating.  My son has the book and I read a bit of it, and I have to say I like Spielberg's version better then the authors.  I'm not saying the author does a bad job, but film and books are two distinct different mediums.  Spielberg is a master at film, and what he does is create a couple of set pieces in the film that are very memorable.  The race which starts the film is exciting and breathtaking to watch, and so is the dance off at the Oasis between the two characters Parzival and Art3mis.

I did not get all the pop culture nods in the film, but I'm sure that's for me to see when I see it again.  I have a feeling that you will see something new after every time you see this movie.  My boys certainly caught a lot of the pop culture references and characters then I did, but then again they have young eyes, and are trained to react quickly because they game.

I swear the next generation will be hyper sensitive to visuals and very good at multitasking.  Their brains are being wired to think faster, and react faster, and do more then us older folk.  I don't see this as a totally bad thing, because age is always a decider in one slowing down, but Ready Player One is a movie that plays to the younger generation.

The movie though did speak to me.   Spielberg infuses the film with a deep moral compass which I can't argue with, and that is we all NEED to interact with each other on a one on one bases.  That's how we develop connections.

The main character starts out a loner with friends he truly doesn't know, but by the end he is a boy with many friends and a deep love for them.  It is their love that get's him through to the end of the contest in the film.  In essence Spielberg says imagination is good, but look to reality to create you're relationships and through those relationships you can create a better reality.

I liked the message, and that's why I have to recommend it.  The movie does have romance, adventure, and is funny at times.  But then this is a Spielberg film.  Spielberg knows his stuff, and he knows what he's doing.  Ready Player One is a fun and exciting film that people of all ages can enjoy.

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