Adapted from an old MTV animated series, Aeon Flux could've been so much more than it was. I remember watching the show as an early teen and never really understood what was going on, but everything was so cool. This chick of the future was running and jumping around with basically just some black leather straps covering her unmentionables and shooting the hell out of everything and everyone while things are exploding all around her. What teenage boy wouldn't watch something like that? In many of the episodes, she actually dies at the end. Violently in most cases.
The story takes place 400 years in the post-apocalyptic future, in a city where the remaining 5 million people of the earth all live. Contained within the city by huge walls to keep them safe from what lies beyond. I think not really knowing what is going on right away made the film a little better for me. If you read any other review, it will tell you the underlying theme of the movie; which in my opinion would take away something from the experience. I liked trying to figure out what was going on and why everything is at is.
Charlize Theron plays Aeon Flux - a rebel of rebels with the cause to eventually overthrow their, they believe, oppressive government. Other stars include Pete Postlewaite, Frances McDormand and Jonny Lee Miller. So the cast is pretty strong, but none of them delivered anything resembling good. Especially McDormand. I can't believe she signed on to this role. So the characters are pretty dull. They offer no assistance in helping Aeon Flux come to life. Guy fans of Theron will appreciate the more-than revealing outfits and her high flying acrobatics, but those of us who also appreciate her for her amazing acting abilties (see "Monster" or "North Country") will be sorely let down.
The visuals are damn cool. The settings are kind of neat; a future city with interesting gadgets and weapons. There are lots of pillars and tunnels and "magical" gateways. The lighting is very surreal, deliberate and almost fake, but is still very fun to look at. But that's about it. Scenery and settings don't make a movie either though.
Most of the best parts of the film you can see in the preview. In one of the earlier moments in the films there's a neat scene of Aeon and friend attempting to infiltrate the government headquarters. After that, it's a lot shooting and blowing things up that really add up to a bunch of nothing. Since the studio didn't release it to critics early, that usually means it's because they know it is garbage. I didn't find it to be that exactly, though I would guess most people will.
So after all the trashing I just performed on this movie, I want to say that I basically thought it was okay. Despite poor performances, cheesy dialogue, a less than mediocre storyline and a lot of nothingness, there were enough cool things to keep my attention. One of them, as I said earlier, was trying to figure out exactly what was going on - the backstory is slowly unraveled to us as to why and how people are doing certain things. Couple that with all the neato effects and gadgets and I can live with it. I also give it credit for at least trying to be smart - the idea of the movie is interesting. I won't ever watch it again, but I like sci-fi and thought this one was worth of my time. Most will hate it and consider walking out, but not me.