I’m not a photographer, but I love tilt-shift effect photography. In fact, there was a time when I almost bought a prosumer camera just to get my hands on it. Fortunately, I’m not that crazy. Yet. This film employs the said effect on its opening credit sequences to a great result. I love it. Shame, that was about the only thing lovable from this film. The rest is just worthless. Even if when the film tries to be cool and thrown-in Star Wars reference and all, it’s just pain to sit through that more than once I felt compelled to just get out of the theater. And that song and dance sequence? Even if I had a soft spot for musicals, they were just horrible.
I don’t think that there’s someone out there with an access to the Internet that doesn’t recognize the base story of Gulliver’s Travels of which this modernization film is based upon. Yea, a normal human traveled to another world of the Liliput Kingdom where everyone is about six centimeters tall (I’m just making a wild estimation but you get my point). The normal human this time is a New York Tribune’s mailroom guy (Jack Black) who was by chance I best not mentioned, ordered to make a traveling report to the Bermuda Triangle where he was then drown and stranded on the beach of Liliput. The rest was formulaic. Culture shock, acceptance, betrayal, truth, and then appropriate ending.
To put it lightly, this film is a mess. The scenes were jumbled, uncoordinated, and almost felt like it was being orchestrated by a lunatic conductor on crack. I almost had an impression that the scenes were exists merely to facilitate Jack Black’s goofy personae or, to allow some scripts, conversations, or scenes to give an illusion that they were funny while in truth, not by a long shot. I was cringed during the “-eth” scene, or that silly “I’m kidnapped” disastrous banter. Jack Black is a funny guy actually but I don’t think he has what it takes to be the leading man. This role especially, is just not for him. In my mind’s eye, Jack Black is supposed to be a geek kind of guy which is why “School of Rock” and “Be Kind Rewind” were entertaining while this excuse of a film, is not. Sure, the film allows time and again to have some geek references thrown in. But really, these were too out-of-context, too insignificant, and too unfunny.
Well, there’s actually one small condolence from this film. The special effect was pretty neat. Also that robot thingy was also quite smooth even if a comparison to that film about the Hasbro toys were understandably inevitable.
My rating: * / **** – Very good special effect, but terrible in everything else. However, the guy sits next to me seems like he enjoying it quite a lot. He laughs all the time while I didn’t laugh. Not even once. Unfortunately, when the film made a reference to “Yoda,” he actually sounds puzzled muttered almost pathetically, “who is Yoda?” So, there, I rest my case.