“This past weekend was actually a perfect dichotomy of quality vs entertainment. I already wrote about how Dunkirk was high quality, but I couldn’t really get into it. Valerian may have been the exact opposite. Lots of technical imperfections, but a very enjoyable film.
First off, can I just express my annoyance at the title? The graphic novel series this film is based on is called Valerian and Laureline, why is the film only called Valerian? Surely, they could have worked out a title that included both names. Sorry end feminist rant>
But yeah, based on a French sci fi comic that director Luc Besson grew up with. Now when I think of Besson, I think of The Professional (hell I even picture Jean Reno when I hear his name) or La Femme Nikita or Lucy, but for a lot of you, the first movie you think of is The Fifth Element. The Fifth Element was actually greatly influenced by Valerian and Laureline, and this movie is actually something that Besson has been working towards his whole life.
And it showed. The whole movie felt very much like a labor of love, with a lot of attention to details in the world created. Sure, maybe more attention to setting than dialog and plot, but such are the priorities of a crowd pleasing scifi. The world they inhabited looked rich and vibrant, there were original and creative creatures I simply adored, and I was constantly fascinated by what new species or technology we’d encounter next. Also, that trans-dimensional marketplace? I have so many questions! But we’ll save that for another time.
Yeah Valerine was flat and Laureline deserved better, but the point was I had a good time. We don’t get a lot of quirky scifi like this, and rarely with this level of devotion behind it. So again, for this weekend, Dunkirk may have been the better movie, but Valerian is the one I enjoyed more.
Valerian and the City of A Thousand Planets – \m/ \m/ \m/ \n”