Mortal Engines (2018)
December 19, 2018 12:20 AM - Subscribe

Hundreds of years after civilization was destroyed by a cataclysmic event, a mysterious young woman, Hester Shaw, emerges as the only one who can stop London — now a giant, predator city on wheels — from devouring everything in its path. Based on the novels by Philip Reeve.
posted by GuyZero (9 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
For all the special effects blowout this movie is on track [sic] to do pretty poorly at the box office.

And that's because it is a hot, hot mess of a YA movie.
posted by GuyZero at 12:22 AM on December 19, 2018 [2 favorites]

Spouse and I went to see it last weekend, in case it was an entertaining ball of nonsense a la Pacific Rim. I love a goodbad movie, with hammy acting and ridiculous Rule of Cool ideas. You know the type.

Unfortunately, this was not it. There were a few environments that looked like interesting video game levels, in that they looked cool and made little practical sense. Otherwise it was a crammed-together series of set pieces that never. ever. ever. takes. a chance. to breathe. ever. Maybe once, the Twinkie scene? I guess? The 10 minute mark felt like an hour in, and then it just kept going at that pace.

I'm not mad - we had fun nitpicking afterward, and we get a very minor character named Dr. Twix, which amuses me more than it should. But I didn't get what I was half-hoping for.
posted by cage and aquarium at 4:58 AM on December 19, 2018

I've been seeing lots of subway ads for this movie, but I was absolutely certain that it was another one of those Mortal Instruments movies. That's some bad marketing.
posted by showbiz_liz at 12:50 PM on December 19, 2018 [5 favorites]

I was absolutely certain that it was another one of those Mortal Instruments movies.

Another one? I thought this was the Mortal Instruments movie. And you're suggesting there's more than one of them already?
posted by GhostintheMachine at 5:47 PM on December 19, 2018

Two different book series:

The Mortal Instruments
Mortal Engines

The Mortal Instruments was going to be a movie series but the first one didn't make enough money.
posted by Pendragon at 3:33 AM on December 20, 2018

I'm not sure that last fact helps to distinguish this one at all.
posted by tobascodagama at 7:35 AM on December 20, 2018 [3 favorites]

I will add to my short review to say that my usual beef with movies based on novels is that the movies elides way too much of the book. And I get why this happens, they're very different media. I just don't like it.

But here, I finally get my wish, monkey's paw style. They have included pretty much everything from the novel and as a result the movie never gets a chance to pause and it feels like there's a handful of irrelevant plotlines that go nowhere.
posted by GuyZero at 12:56 PM on December 20, 2018 [1 favorite]

I quite liked the book (and series) this is based on.

I'm almost certainly skipping the movie.
posted by kyrademon at 3:32 PM on December 20, 2018

My son and I went to see this because it looked cool and steam-punky. Neither of us has read the book(s).
He liked it, warts and all.

I felt like it would have made a good multi-part netflix type series, but that the restrictions of compressing the story (natch) into a 2-ish hour movie made it impossible to stitch the actions scenes (very nice) together with any kind of character development or really anything approaching logical continuity. I could almost see what was being left out, and that made the movie okay by me on the whole.
posted by OHenryPacey at 5:02 PM on December 26, 2018 [1 favorite]

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