Saturday 26 May 2012

Today's Review: Journey 2: The Mysterious Island

Oh, hee hee. I see what you did there. Worked the sequel indicator into the title so it reads as "Journey To The Mysterious Island". That's clever. Yes, Journey 2 is a sequel to 2008's Journey To The Centre Of The Earth, except that it only features one person from the original. I figured if that it must be a bad movie if they can't even get Brendan Fraser to agree to do it.

Instead we have The Rock, because it's a kids movie, and kids love The Rock for some reason. He plays the stepfather of Sean, the guy from the first movie, as both are dragged into another adventure after uncovering the secret location of the mysterious island that Jules Verne and a couple of others wrote about. I say uncover, but they seem to figure it out pretty easily after about five minutes of looking into it, which makes me think that this movie is set in an alternate universe where people are stupid or just don't give a crap.

But really the whole of the movie works this way. I realise they don't have much time to explain all the precise mechanics and twists and turns of the adventure 'cause they've got kids to entertain, but the majority of the movie is the characters discovering they're in some kind of trouble, and then figuring out the next super secret clue to get out of harm's way in a couple of seconds. It's way too fast paced, switching from place to place all the time.

I guess that's my only real quibble with Journey 2 though, even though it's quite a big one. The rest of the movie, despite my apprehension, was actually not that bad. The visuals are really nice, and the 3D is pretty awesome too. The performances are what you'd expect from this kind of movie, decidedly average, even from Michael Caine, but The Rock's constant spouting of one liners does manage to hit the right note from time to time, and the squabbling between him and Caine's character is quite entertaining.

Journey 2 is just a fun movie, nothing more. Kids will like it, and that's who it's aimed at, there's nothing much in the way of substance or acting that will make it a well remembered classic. The story hurtles along at a fast pace, but it does use the time effectively to cram in a whole lot of stuff. While I thought I'd hate it, it isn't all that bad.

My rating: 3/5

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