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Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Thi Them, Oct 3, 2001.
quote: "Final Fantasy" earns its place in history the way "Citizen Kane" and "Birth of a Nation" did, by doing the right thing in the right place at the right time. Each frame of film can be printed, framed, and hanged for display as a handsome work of art. However, viewed as a long-form feature, "Final Fantasy: The Spirits Within" offers a rigorous, thoughtful, even spiritual time at the movies. This film is one of the ten best of 2001.[/quote]
I'm sorry, but this movie should not be mentioned in the same light as Citizen Kane.
Editor, IGN DVD
[Edited last by Jeremy Conrad on October 03, 2001 at 02:21 PM]
I think the comparison makes a little more sense if you look at the preceding paragraph:
The movie itself was good, it looked gorgeous, and the score was excellent. Save sub-par voice acting, and the film was perfect.
It should be mentioned in the same light as "Citizen Kane" if you are talking about revolutions in film making. Kane was visually and mentally stimulating, and so is TSW. Granted, there are many better films than TSW, but it is still up there in the "revolutionizing film" section. Toy Story revolutionized film for having CG, TSW revolutionized film by making it realistic CG.
I have a feeling this is the kind of movie that you get more out of on second viewings. I have seen it once and rated it a 6.5/10 at best but I have a feeling I will have a better outlook after seeing the DVD.
My Favourite Movie
Funny, I never expected this warm of a reception for FF:TSW on this forum. I was a fan of the games and really psyched to see the movie, but was utterly disappointed.
"One of the ten best movies of the year"? 2001 was not a good year for movies, but I could easily come up with a dozen movies that were better. "The Fast & the Furious" and "Bubble Boy" come to mind....
Seriously though, this movie had a major technical impact, but I have no desire to ever see it again. Not only was the voice-acting atrocious, the animation (not "graphics", "animation" denotes motion) was terrible, the plot was uninvolving and the writing was, shall we say, elementary ("WHAT HAVE I DONE!" - LOL, get's me every time )
JMHO, of course, it's tough to get excited about the movie with some of the greatest potential ever, only to come up so very short...
When I saw this movie, I was blown away. Then I got online to check the reviews here, and was stunned by how many people just missed the boat on this film completely. To those who say the animation was terrible **cough cough Nick Gray Cough cough** I have to say that as an animator I was amazed at the subtelty of the work done in Final fantasy. The subtle gestures, a slight turn of the head, everything worked so well.
I think one of the problems is expectation. This movie has much more asian sensibility to it rather than a western one. We're used to the grand gestures, the larger than life movements. This was much more skillfully crafted. The body language wasx used to great effect I found, very subtle and restrained.
The story itself I found very engaging, and while it did follow the standard video-game arc (find the items, put them together and beat the superboss) the details behind this basic arc were very rich. The mix of science and spirituality was well handled, and save for some poor voice acting in places, the dialogue came across very well. To those that say this film had no plot, I say you weren't paying attention.
To compare this film to Citizen Kane may not be the best idea, but taken in context I think the comparison is well deserved. A technical breakthrough that also happens to be a very thoughtfull and engaging movie.
I'm not an animator, nor do I play one on TV, but I agree with Geoffrey that FF was wonderfully drawn and animated. I watch as many of the theatrical animated movies as I can, and I was very impressed with FF.
The spirits, in particular, blew me away. Extremely creative and effective!
And agreeing with someone else (and reiterating my post in another FF thread), this was more anime than action movie, and that doesn't play well in the US.
While I loved it for its looks, and appreciated some aspects distinguishing it from typicak action fare, I found the voice acting mediocre, and the plot and writing to be lacking.
But to look at it! Wow!
Does anyone understand how happy I will be when I get this DVD?
The Thriller video makes it worth it alone. Has anyone seen it?
Why was this moved from software when the review is of the dvd?
If you think of Mona Lisa and the other painting as being revolutionary (like Citizen Kane) then they can be compared. She might not be beautiful (she was originally a hot blonde chick) but she is visually stunning, especially cuz she's FAKE.
Has anyone actually seen the DVD? Like, the whole thing? Or the Thriller video?
I'm sure the dvd is good, but the movie was craptacular. Just horrid. But that's just my opinion. It sure shouldn't be mentioned in the same breath with Citizen Kane.
I have asked this before, so could you please tell me why you hated this film so much? Please don't say the story sucked, but I don't mind any comments on the voice acting or the pace.
From what I have seen from all of the reviews and user comments on the movie that I have read (I've tried to read every one I can find), most people seem to feel that the story was not good because they did not fully understand it and/or they did not care for the foreign spiritual aspects.
For once, I'd like to read a negative opinion of the story from someone who fully understand it and can answer some of these questions: What are the 8 spirits as a whole, and why are they a solution to the phantoms? How did Aki obtain the 8th spirit? What is the meaning of the shot of Aki standing over water?
Further negative opinions on the movie stem from the fact that I feel it has been misunderstood. Some people expected and treated it as an action movie (probably because of the trailers), and were bored (even falling asleep) when they got something lyrical. Some people complained about the lack of emotions or a soul behind the characters, when these characters are in fact suppressed (they have what can be called eastern performances and they have been living for 30 years where probably the majority of the world is dead).
One more thing I see some people say is that this movie is only eye-candy, as if the movie was only good to look at. This movie relies heavily on the visuals to tell the story, much more than the dialogue. The opening shot of Aki on the water can be read, and once understood, it foreshadows the story. Notice how the two main themes of life and death are conveyed in the sequence near the end from Aki and Grey kissing in the spaceship to General Hein with a gun. Observe the last dream scene, and see how that reveals how the 8th spirit was obtained and an important piece of information on Aki. Observe the use of the colors blue and red.
I agree that the dialogue isn't great, but I think it is at least average. I don't have a problem with the dialogue of the Deep Eyes anymore because I have accepted it as soldier speak. On Band of Brothers, I've heard some of the same lines that people have complained about. I happen to think that the last line by Dr. Sid is great, which has received a lot of bad criticism. To appreciate this line, put aside any sexual or bodily connotations and think about the themes of life and death (the lifecyle), the fact that Sid has researched and believed in Gaia for many years and has finally confronted it, and Aki's line earlier in the movie, "Doctor, there is a war going on. No one is young anymore."
I just wanted to tell the way I see most of the negative opinions I've seen. If you don't like it, that is fine. But I hope that some people will take the opportunity to see the movie again, approaching it with a better understanding of what the movie is, and possibly see something better. I know I saw a movie that was a lot better on the second viewing.
Had I said it and it came out good, it would have been what you put. I agree 100%.
To anyone who has researched the movie or knows any back story, the film is supposed to show what Earth has become because of science (and the whole Phantoms thing). One point that is made very clear at the TSW website is that life and death are expressed as "the existence or absence of energy" (or something to that affect). In a world where everything is science, do you really believe people will exhibit the same kind of emotions and lifelike behavior found in films like Toy Story? I don't think so. Everything in the film rotates around the setting for you to understand it. The way the characters act, the way the story unfolds, and even the ending are pretty much all dependent on the setting and the environment that they take place in.
The CGI could actually be argued as an important part of the film. Without it, they would NEVER have been able to accomplish some of the shots or affects that were there.
Also, why do people say this film was connected to Aliens? Is it because of how the Phantoms looked or something?
I suppose it's natural for people to claim others just didn't understand the film when their opinions differ so dramatically.
As others here claim, perhaps I didn't understand it, although I have my doubts (I was told once by my nephew that I just didn't 'get' Pokemon: The Movie and it was in fact brilliant). As far as I'm concerned a bad film is a bad film no matter how you look at it.
Final Fantasy certainly isn't as complex as some portray it. I understood the attempt at introducing a hodegepodge of pop spirituality, elements of animism and environmental awareness, but dismissed them as juvenile nonsense as most with even a vague understanding of actual theological and philosophical concepts would.
The story was so vague virtually any interpretation of the content could be made. Nothing could conceal the film's poorly defined, stereotypical characters or banal dialogue, though. There's no doubting the film looked impressive, but that's about the only compliment I could give it, and even visually it borrowed heavily from previous films.
I find it interesting that hard-core fans of the movie are generally hard-core gamers, while those who aren't fans went to the film unfamiliar with the back-story. While this lack of familiarity may explain their reactions, it's a fault of the movie that this wasn't taken into account (and another strike against it).
Even if viewers don't fully understand a film, the fact that some were literally falling asleep is more an indictment of the film than an indication of any failing on the viewer's part.
All IMHO, of course.
pop spirituality, elements of animism and environmental awareness, but dismissed them as juvenile nonsense as most with even a vague understanding of actual theological and philosophical concepts would.[/quote]
Those with a vauge understanding of actual WESTERN theological and philosophical concepts, perhaps.
Anybody who wants to discuss this further, we'll take it OFF-BOARD. Don't want to violate those religious debate rules.
[Edited last by Shayne Lebrun on October 04, 2001 at 09:21 PM]