Posted On: Saturday - May 27th 2023 4:31PM MST
In Topics:   Political Correctness  Movies  Race/Genetics  Science
This isn't about "Life" the bored game - I forget the rules - it must have been boring - and not "Life" the breakfast cereal - this is the one you could get away with if your Mom didn't read the nutrition info, as grains of sugar were kind of hidden in what looked like mini-wheats. We refer to a fairly recent Science Fiction movie ('17 release) titled LIFE. The LIFE referred to with the title is extraterrestrial life, from Mars.
I really try to give these movies a chance, once I get them started. I want to like the movie, so I don't have to start another, and I just hope the thing is not too heavy with PC, now Wokeness. I took a chance on this one, getting beyond the point of no return, so I can write this review anyway.
As a Sci-Fi movie, this one was in the middle as far as the science goes. I see one end, and I'm talking books now, really, as the work of guys like Arthur C. Clark and Isaac Asimov. They spent time trying to picture how the future COULD work based on their knowledge of science. Things were supposed to make sense for those readers who knew some science. The opposite end for me was Ray Bradbury's novels. I mean, you just got out of the rocket and started walking around on Mars. He didn't explain ANYTHING. Still, because Bradbury was such a great writer, I liked his stuff the best of all of them.
LIFE is in the middle on that - nothing too technical is thrown at the viewer, but the space station with its bio-lab seems reasonable. A sample of material from Mars is captured, and this won't spoil it - there is some micro-scale life from the Red Planet in the sample.
OK, now about this crew. Yeah, they are somewhat diverse, but still the 5 or 6 occupants of the station are amazingly comprised of mostly White people, with a Japanese guy in there and half men. (There are no sex scenes, BTW, so not like the old Sci-Fi books I used to read.) Here's pretty much the only reason I'm writing this review at all, since the movie is nothing special:
There's the double-diverse Black! and handicapped bio-lab scientist - he had no use of his legs. OK,look, I know that checks 2 PC boxes at once, but, dammit, this is spaceflight! You can accommodate* the handicapped with ramps and handholds in bathrooms. It costs money, and the former takes room, but it's doable. From the general story of this movie, there's no doubt that space flight is no routine thing in this future. The station has just room for those 5 or 6. When you're trying to lift stuff out of Earth's gravity well, ounces count, bitchez! You can't add 50 or 100 lb of handicapped equipment.
Well, this guy was a crack life scientist. He wore glasses, so he must have been really smart. That's an interesting aspect of this choice of character - I mean, contact lenses have been around for many decades, so they'd have them in the future too, right? Is this guy only wearing glasses so we'd believe he could really be a crack biologist, good enough to be picked for the mission of another who could actually get around in an emergency? That's raciss, man!
Then, I'm pretty sure this scientist did mention in the movie that his handicap had kept him home and away from the usual crowd, so that he'd had the time to become a crack biologist, rather than a crack... errr ... salesman.
OK, fine, I suspended my disbelief in the idea of choosing a handicapped person for a space mission. Here's what shocked me, though. Of all the crew members, this Black! guy was the screw up! Yes, now not to spoil the movie, but it's just possible that he made a mistake in dealing with this Martian life form that would, well, destroy all humanity. Can you do that in the 21st Century? I don't mean destroy humanity, but cast a Black! person as the biggest screw-up in a movie. That's it, Casting Society of America, you'll never work in dis bidness again!
I give LIFE the movie one thumb up for the courage or at least disregard of Wokeness by the screenwriter and the casting company. Also, the story was OK. It's not a date movie, as it could have been with really nasty alien life form, the usual human-sized drooling and dripping insect-like creature who will scare your date enough to where she grabs you a lot. Nah, this life form was kind of amorphous, but it was still going to kick humanity's ass. If it hadn't been for that stupid .... We'd have been better off if he'd been out in the hood with his homies, killing only a small fraction of humanity.
* I don't believe in any mandatory accommodation by government, mind you, as the market could well take care of this. I'm talking voluntary niceness here.