"Feels Like STAR WARS"
SERENITY is about a rogue crew 500 years in the future who was on the losing side in a galactic civil war and now has a chance to topple the evil Universal Alliance. There are some moral messages about justice and family, but also characters who pray to Buddha and deny God’s existence. Added to the occasionally intense violence, SERENITY requires some discernment.
Adapted from a cancelled Fox television show with a ravenous cult fan base, SERENITY is about a rogue crew 500 years in the future that was on the losing side in a galactic civil war and now has a chance to topple the evil Universal Alliance.
Captain Malcolm Reynolds takes any job he can find to keep himself and his crew fed, even illegal assignments like theft. His reputation for resisting the sinister intergalactic government leads a young doctor named Simon to the ship. Simon needs help rescuing his sister, River, from a dangerous experiment. Once she is safely aboard, the crew realizes that a headhunter is after them. It turns out that River is psychic and learned some government secrets while in captivity.
As Malcolm investigates, he finds that the Universal Alliance has been testing a drug on some of its citizens that puts them into a perfectly peaceful – though potentially deadly – state. Malcolm, River and the crew want to expose the danger but have to do so before they’re caught and killed.
This adventure is hard to contain (and hard to summarize). SERENITY has many subplots and only a hazy focus. Although the movie begins with River and the plot depends on her, the real star is the irritable but good hearted captain of the ship, Malcolm. He takes care of his friends and wants to see justice prevail. Further, Simon is fiercely loyal to his sister, neglecting his personal life to make sure River stays safe. His familial love propels him to risk his life many times.
From a filmmaking standpoint, lively action and a quick pace are this movie’s best assets. The script is lacking, however, bogged down with silly one-liners that sound as if they were lifted from a mid-90s Arnold Schwarzenegger vehicle.
Unfortunately, there are a lot of dubious elements in the movie, including a statement that equates God to “a train that never comes” and a character who prays to Buddha for help. River also has psychic powers. The violence is a little intense, especially when men are impaled with swords, but possibly no more graphic than what one might have seen on the television show. The foul language and sexual references are happily minor.
Though there is a positive mention of Christianity, the movie is crowded with mixed spiritual elements that might make it confusing for younger audiences. Keep that in mind if you choose to see SERENITY.
(BB, C, Ab, FR, O, L, VV, S, N, A, DD, M) Strong moral worldview with familial love and sacrifice stressed, plus characters defeat an evil, humanist plot by the government to “defeat sin” and make earth a paradise, as well as characters consult a Christian leader (though he advocates directionless belief), anti-biblical reference to God being a “train that never comes,” woman prays to Buddha, and character possesses psychic powers; seven obscenities and two profanities; men impaled, bar brawl, shootout, man shot in leg, village burned, town full of decaying corpses, and an aircraft chase; light sexual references such as brief talk about heterosexual sexual desires on a spaceship; upper male nudity; alcohol use; smoking and evil government drugs its citizens; and, stealing and evil government brainwashes, drugs and experiments on its citizens.
SERENITY is about a rogue crew 500 years in the future who was on the losing side in a galactic civil war and now has a chance to topple the evil Universal Alliance. Captain Malcolm Reynolds takes any job he can find to keep himself and his crew fed, even illegal assignments. His reputation leads some fugitives to the ship. It turns out that the government is looking for one of the fugitives because she learned government secrets with her psychic powers. Now Malcolm and his brave crew have to escape a fierce headhunter so they can spread word of the Universal Alliance’s evil plan.
The irritable but good hearted captain takes care of his friends and wants to see justice prevail. Further, a brother is fiercely loyal to his sister, neglecting his personal life to make sure she stays safe. Mixed in with these good aspects are some anti-biblical and false religious elements, however, that will confuse young viewers. The violence can be a little intense, but foul language and sexual references are happily minor. SERENITY moves quickly and is never boring, but use discernment if you choose to see it.