Thursday, May 5, 2011

Atlas Shrugged needs more coherence

Okay, so what did I think of Atlas Shrugged (Paul Johansson), which is still screening in metro Detroit but has gotten very dismal reviews.  Rotten Tomatoes’ accumulated critics’ score is 13 per cent. And even right-wing talk show host Michael Medved gave it muted praise.....My big criticism of the movie - based on Ayn Rand’s classic 1957 book - is that, if you did not know what the story was about, you were a bit lost. (It put my friend to sleep.) If you know the story, are a Rand fan, or simply like the movie’s message or adventure plot, it will engage you even though it has the look and feel of a made-for-TV movie and has a few phony computer-generated graphics, such as the depiction of rail baron Dagney Taggart’s high speed train.....The best thing about this film bar none is Taylor Schilling (above left) as Taggart. Just as Rand depicted her, she’s an assertive beauty, interested in developing the very best railroad using the very best steel for her outdated and sabotaged tracks. She's a true hero fighting a bevy of politicians, bureaucrats and weasel business types who seek to undermine her and steel magnate Hank Rearden’s (Grant Bowler, who is the second best thing about the movie) vision.....I was surprised that the screening I attended at the Birmingham 8 had as many people as it did. The audience seemed a cross section of the population. This is Part I of a three-part film, one that took decades make (see posts below)......Producer John Aglialoro says the remaining parts will still come out in 2012 and 2013 despite the negative reviews.....Due to the film's low budget marketing was primarily through talk radio and web sites. Originally scheduled for 50 screens  public demand saw it end up on first 300 then more than 400 screens. It didn’t do too badly at the box office the first week - $1.6 mil and placing 14th overall. But ticket sales dropped dramatically after that.....If Parts II and III can be fine-tuned technically to match Schilling and Bowler’s performances, and a more coherent story line added, this film can be as good as Indiana Jones, and with much more of a message.....

No comments:

Post a Comment