The first thing I feel that I must acknowledge about this movie is that, at the time of writing, this movie is 22 years old. 22. Twenty-two. Over 2 decades. We sat here one lazy warm winter evening with our 12 year old child and watched this and it was GREAT.
I say again, 22 years old. Us adults had seen it before and it had come straight to mind when we talked about great monster movies that wouldn’t be TOO terrifying for a pre-teen who’s not always into mild peril. The 12 year old thought it was okay too.
The CGI is old. The movie is old! And yet it wasn’t nearly as hokey as the slo-mo opening credits CGI in the 2019 Zombieland: Double Tap (which we abandoned after just 11 minutes and 2 seconds, by the way). It was okay.
Our pre-teen has learned about representation in movies, by the way. About ten minutes into this one, the question that I often ask: “Where are all the black people?” Just as a black actor came into the storyline. “Where is the female lead?” Just as Trillian came into the storyline. Granted, the former was playing a bad guy and the latter was very nearly a real female hero – but then there was Leila who was also a real female hero right up until she was written out of the rest of the movie.
There’s a couple of hokey, stereotypical characters. The whole movie is hokey and stereotypical. And the CGI is old because the whole movie is old. But damn! This one goes down as a rare treat of a movie. It knows what it is. It doesn’t try to be anything more. And it’s ok with that. And so am I.