Valerian, or it’s full name: Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets) is a 2017 English-language French 3D science fiction action-adventure epic film, written and directed by Luc Besson, and co-produced by Besson and his wife, Virginie Besson-Silla. The film has gained a lot of hype due to it’s lengandary begginnings. Originally based on a French science fiction comic series Valérian and Laureline, written by Pierre Christin and illustrated by Jean-Claude Mézières. It is said George Lucas based a lot of aspects of Star Wars on the comic.
The film stars fancy cast such as Dane DeHaan as Valerian and model come actress Cara Delevingne as Laureline, with cameos from some other familiar faces Clive Owen, Rihanna, Ethan Hawke, Herbie Hancock, Kris Wu, and Rutger Hauer. Besson independently crowd-sourced and personally funded Valerian which was something between $177–210 million, making it the most expensive European and independent film to date.
The film revolves around partners Valerian and Laureline who mare a sort of swat team security for an organisation. To be honest the details don’t matter too much, seems like they are sort of hired out ? The emphasis is more on the fact Valerian is quite the ladies’ man and he has climbed ranks quickly and changed partners just as fast as and in more way than one. However now he believes his current partner is the one and rather than dating her he starts the film by proposing.
Valerian gets an energy burst as he is sleeping and ascertains what seemed like a dream was a memory of an alien.race being wiped into extinction and a planet destroyed. How is this connected to his commanding general being kidnapped? All things lead back to the ship, Alpha where it homes many alien races, languages and knowledge. On the ship an area has been infected and all points to this area as to where the general has been taken.
Personally I didn’t like the character of Valerian, as I found him smug as he was made to be invincible at times and totally useless at the same time. Apart from that, I quite enjoyed the film. The first 10 minutes are by far the most compelling moments and rival special effects of the famous Avatar move.
Since it is a sci fi film, the concept of different worlds existing but not to be seen made perfect sense and promoting VR sets seemed like a basic necessity and I quite liked how everything worked in sync. From a non-techy point of view; the action was good. Inappropriate sexual chemistry worked well and I think we will see a lot more of Delevingne in movies.
Favourite part of the film was being introduced to Rhinanna’s character, Bubble, who is an alien who can shapeshift into to any human or alien race. Being used by Ethan Hawke as entertainer Valerian comes across her to infiltrate a sector of the ship to save Laureline. Not only is Rhinanna’s dancing superb matched with quality 40’s piano ensemble, she is given a emotional backstory of being trained at the age of four to perform and having no real identity to call her own. The most important thing is her, Valerian and Laureline fall down a trash shoot and Laureline is wearing a white wedding-esqe dress –LUCAS I SPOT your thievery.
The music is good, great action and comedy from start to finish with a decent plot and a cute animal – can’t really knock this movie.
I give it a 3.5 out of 5.
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