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  • Justin Louallen

Future World - Written Movie Review

Tonight, I'm reviewing the post-apocalyptic film, Future World, directed by James Franco and Bruce Thierry Chong, and stars Franco, Lucy Liu, Milla Jovovich, Jeffrey Wahlberg, Suki Waterhouse, and Snoop Dogg.

In the future, mankind creates artificial intelligence with the most advance technology leading to a global war and causing the world to become isolated with humans having to survive, while the remaining robots have gone into hiding. A young man named Prince (Jeffrey Wahlberg) must find a cure for his sick mother (Lucy Liu). As he searches the wastelands of the desert, he discovers an android named Ash (Suki Waterhouse), who's being controlled by the evil gang leader, Warlord (James Franco) and seek to use Prince to lead them back to his city called "Oasis", while also dealing with pimps, drug dealers, and other obstacles along the way.

I didn't expect much going into this film. I figured it would be one of those Mad Max-inspired films that we see every once in a while that tries to build an interesting world on the post-apocalyptic setting, which I've come to enjoy with some movies like Waterworld and The Book Of Eli. After watching this film, I could honestly say, I was appalled by how bad this was.

Pros: There are some semi-descent Steadicam shots that I kind of liked, especially how the camera stays on one person when they're in an action scene and it tries to look like it's done in a single shot, but it only lasts so long until the awful fast-cut editing ruins it for me. Plus, there's also a neat cinematography shot where it shows the color red and Franco is riding his motorbike and wearing a horned helmet.

I also got a couple of laughs from Snoop Dogg playing the pimp in the "Love Town" area of the world, but that was mainly because of how he was pretty much playing himself. That's as far as I go.

Cons: Where do I even begin with this movie?

This film tries desperately to be a low-rent knockoff of Mad Max and other post-apocalyptic films with it's setting, characters, story, and visual style, but it becomes so stale, unoriginal, boring, and dull to the point that I cant even qualify it as a rip-off. This is like one of those one dollar bargain bin movies you happen to pick up at a dollar store and it tricks you into thinking it's going to be epic, especially with it's all star cast, but I don't even think that would even describe this monstrosity. The story is so boring and uninteresting that it even makes it's world that it builds upon not even matter and it takes itself way too seriously. We get introduced to countless venues that our main characters go to and it becomes extremely predictable and it uses every single cliché' in the book on the way it plans out and it does nothing whatsoever to bring any kind of commentary, satire, fun, thrill, action, or even suspense in any way.

The editing in this film was a nightmare. We have scenes where characters conveniently show up in different places like putting a cheat code to spawn something in Grand Theft Auto where they just pop out of nowhere. Not to mention, the action scenes are poorly handled, especially how there are jump cuts happening when the camera tries do it's Steadicam shot by following a person around and then it randomly cuts to another shot.

Don't even get me started on the cinematography. How is it that this films looks so cheap that it's almost like they filmed their entire film in Puke-O-Vision? It's all murky and adds no atmosphere or tension, except for that one brief shot that I mentioned earlier. Plus, the production design looks like someone went to a junkyard and used whatever they could find and then find some empty crack houses and used those as "futuristic" locations.

All of the performances in this were horrible. I admire James Franco as an actor and even as a director, (especially when he starred and directed 2017's The Disaster Artist), but man was he so awful in this. He's playing this over the top stereotypical gang leader who is so full of himself and mugging at the camera left and right to the point that it's almost like Franco is playing a caricature of himself on meth, and every other drug combined and he doesn't even remotely come across as intimediating in the least bit. The rest of the cast don't fair any better. Suki Waterhouse I felt was so dull, lifeless and inconsistent at times, especially with this later "twist" that you see coming lightyears away. Lucy Liu, who I haven't seen in a movie in a long time, is completely wasted in this. She spends most of her screen time being bed-ridden and this role could've been played by anyone. The worst performance of all was Milla Jovovich. I really like her as an actress, especially in a lot of her other films, but here, she is so cringe-worthy and annoyingly bad. It's almost like she's playing a cross between Jared Leto's Joker and Alice from the Resident Evil films on a high dose of meth. Plus, it seemed like every single actor in this movie looked like they were all in a completely different film based on tone and performance.

Overall, this movie could've had potential if it went all out as a fun tribute or satire with it's setting, but no, instead it became possibly the worst post-apocalyptic film I've ever seen. This will definitely be on my worst of 2018 films.

Final Grade:

What were your thoughts on this film? Comment below and I'll see you on my next review.

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