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June 24, 2024

Jack the Giant Slayer: Movie Review

By Bernie and Sand Pilarski

Sand said:

Okay, so just a few weeks ago, we saw Warm Bodies with Nicholas Hoult portrayed as a hapless zombie kid who had no chance at all with the top general's daughter, except he did, because in spite of being a zombie, he had a heart of gold and a plan.


This week, we saw Jack the Giant Slayer with Nicholas Hoult as a hapless peasant dork kid who had no chance at all with the King's daughter, except he did, because in spite of being a peasant, he had a heart of gold and a plan.

Do we see a theme here?

Exit zombies, enter giants, most of whom look like Lord of the Rings' Gollum -- you can see it in the eyes.

Seriously, how many Gollum eyes do you have to see on a myriad of Giants before you know who did it and how lazily done the CGI was?

There you go, that's all the bitching I will do about this movie.

Oh, no, wait, it was ... a watch-checker, and I did wish today that I'd replaced the battery on my watch so that I could check it and see if we were near the end or not.

Now, THAT's all the bitching I'll do about the movie.

Oh well, no it isn't, but in the mean time, it was a cute movie that I'd have no trouble watching with my grand-daughters, and that I will watch again, most likely, when they want to see it on either DVD or netflix.

The fairy tale is reasonably told. Jack is kind of a simple soul on the surface, fascinated by the legends of giants and their war with humans, and their defeat by King Eric. He trades off his horse for some magic beans (the beans were supposed to be collateral for some serious copper coinage once they were returned to a monastery) and incurs the wrath of his uncle by doing so. One bean is lost in the floorboards of Jack's hut, and when the next rainstorm occurs -- whoosh! The bean sprouts, into a monstrous vine (reminiscent of kudzu, or the infamous "perennial morning glory") carrying the visiting princess and Jack's hut off into the sky.

Jack, enamored of the beautiful princess, sets off with her father's soldiers to rescue her from the land of Giants in the sky.

The Giants, we shall see, are always hungry, and have a special hatred and appetite for humans.

Hilarity ensues. And adventure.

This is, again, a "cute" movie.

Intentional or no, it also had the flavor of a "backstory" movie. The ending begs for another round, and some of the scenes in Jack the Giant Slayer shout for more exposition.

Go see it, it's fun, and cute, and inoffensive, unless you don't care to see boogers. Or people being eaten by giants.

The CGI giant toes were awesome, much better than the eyes.

Bernie said:

So, just a quick word about the Oscars. They were pretty much okay this year. I am speaking of the selection of the winners, of course, not the show. (Aside from the fact that host Seth McFarland can sing better than I would have guessed, he was tasteless and humorless, and that didn't surprise me.) I might quibble a bit with the Best Actor award. Daniel Day-Lewis is a fine actor and did a splendid job in his portrayal of Lincoln, but this was not the Fine Actor award, it was for Best Actor, and I thought that there was a better performance out there. But I quibble, and Mr. Day-Lewis is a worthy recipient of the Oscar.

I mention the Oscars because I want you to know that Bryan Singer's Jack the Giant Slayer will not be mentioned even once in next year's Oscar show unless Nicholas Hoult is tapped to host the show, and as busy as he has been lately, he might be.

Not that this is a bad movie. It's not. I admit that I expected a lot more from a Bryan Singer movie, but this film was solidly cute. The same might be said about the cast -- there are some good actors involved, but there wasn't any good acting. The film is a bit tongue-in-cheek, and there was ample opportunity for humor, but it wasn't very funny. What there was in abundance was CGI -- the special effects were good and done well. This movie reminded me a bit of the 1998 Matthew Broderick version of Godzilla, a movie that had a great giant lizard and not much else.

But I repeat, it was cute. It was even cute enough to be worth the price of admission for the early morning discount showing.

Still, if you are at all busy, don't worry much about this one -- it'll keep till it gets to cable.

Article © Bernie and Sand Pilarski. All rights reserved.
Published on 2013-03-04
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