Reviewed by: Raphael Vera
love and self-sacrifice for others in a world of evil
Jupiter in the Bible
What does the Bible say about intelligent life on other planets? Answer
Are we alone in the universe? Answer
Does Scripture refer to life in space? Answer
questions and answers about the origin of life
|Featuring:||Mila Kunis … Jupiter Jones
Channing Tatum … Caine
Eddie Redmayne … Balem
James D'Arcy …
Sean Bean … Stinger
Douglas Booth … Titus
Gugu Mbatha-Raw … Famulus
Tuppence Middleton … Kalique Abrasax
Charlotte Beaumont … Kiza
Maria Doyle Kennedy … Aleksa
|Producer:||Village Roadshow Pictures
|Distributor:||Warner Bros. Pictures|
Jupiter Jones (Mila Kunis) was given her name because Jupiter was on the rise the evening she was born. Her mother felt she was destined for glory, but Jupiter has a hard time believing this while she, and the rest of her family, spend long days cleaning other people’s homes to earn their meager living. But there are those far, far away that have recently learned of her existence and her place in the universe. Some will try to kill her before she learns of it. Others will do all they can to help her.
The House of Abrasax is one of the most powerful dynasties in the galaxy. Led by the brothers Abrasax, Balem (Eddie Redmayne) and Titus (Douglas Booth) and their sister Kalique (Tuppence Middleton), they wield influence and power on a level that all too often leaves targeted planets in utter ruin. All have their own agenda for finding Jupiter, but are just as invested in keeping each other from knowing what their plans are. Soon bounty hunters, morphing aliens and an ex-military hunter named Caine Wise (Channing Tatum) are converging on Earth and depending on who gets to her first the fate of Jupiter, Earth and the Abrasax dynasty will hang in the balance.
“Jupiter Ascending” is a visually stunning film directed by the Wachowski’s of “The Matrix” trilogy fame whose intent was to launch the next great space opera franchise. Sure to please some, whose likely audience profile will be discussed shortly, it falls short of achieving its “epic” goal in several areas, including its PG-13 rated content.
Violence: Heavy. Mostly bloodless, there are a few scenes that show blood, but in a non-overt manner. The majority of the casualties are aliens of various forms and are usually shot during a melee where individual deaths are hard to focus on. Chicago experiences widespread destruction with buildings and other structures being blown apart, crashed into and, in the case of cars, thrown. Deaths are mostly implied to have occurred, but are not shown. Peril in the form of near suffocations, decompression, fire, explosions and shots from blaster type weapons are frequent. Torture is shown about to be performed twice, but the camera either cuts away or the torture is abated.
Language: Moderate. The curses used included sh** (7), bit**(2), cr** (3), d*mn (1) with The Lord’s name taken in vain 12 times by my count. No other curses were heard which gives this film a relatively low curse count compared to most PG-13 films.
Sex/Nudity: Moderate to heavy. There is an lengthy scene with Jupiter’s friend Katharine as she prepares for a date while wearing exotic underwear and many females are dressed in skin tight leather clothes. Caine’s mostly naked backside is briefly seen when he emerges from water and Kalique exhibits a fully nude view from behind in a very extended scene as she exits a bath. In a bizarre zero gravity scene containing neither nudity nor actual sex a group of girls surround Balem and though they are clothed the sensual movements and the sounds they are making indicate they are there for his pleasure and vice versa. The unfortunate use of gratuitous titillation within a ‘comic book’ style adventure appears aimed at a young, immature and susceptible male audience.
EUGENICS—Lord Balem states, “My mother taught me that some lives always matter more than others” as the self-serving rationale he uses for planetary genocide. This is a theme that became popularized via Darwinism whose ‘survival of the fittest’ inspired Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, and was later used to justify Nazi Germany’s disrespect of life starting with the disabled, then the elderly and eventually the Jews. The Word of God teaches that He made us all and that we should in turn protect the life he created.
“For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb.” —Psalm 139:13
HUMILITY—Jupiter was raised in a hard working, humbling environment (cleaning toilets), and, while that does not by any means ever ensure humility, she chose to embrace it. After she is garbed in royal robes, the first opportunity she has she asks to be able to change into regular clothes. When given a chance to lord her authority, she rejects this and chooses instead to do menial tasks again. The Word of God has always said that the heart that pleases God will be a humble one and that He himself will reward us.
“For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” —Luke 14:11
MERCY—Jupiter gains the upper hand and has the opportunity to take the lives of her enemies on more than one occasion, and yet she chooses instead to walk away. Despite what they have done, and what they may yet do, she shows mercy. Against the sinful nature in all of us that yearns for vengeance, God calls us, within his strength, to rise above our wants just as His Word both commands and warns:
“Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay, ” says the Lord.” —Romans 12:19
Caine, against his better judgment and despite his loathing of the “entitled” class, takes on the assignment to kidnap Jupiter in order to restore his former commander Stinger, another well played role by the gruff Sean Bean, to his rightful status. Meanwhile, years earlier Stinger had sacrificed his commission and was banished to Earth in order to save Caine from punishment. Friends like this are a blessing and spoken of by Solomon in the Old Testament when he wrote:
“A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.” —Proverbs 18:24
I would be remiss if I did not mention here two underlying points in the film: evolution and reincarnation.
The movie presents a hidden origin for man on Earth, namely that we have been planted/seeded here by extraterrestrials. This is not unusual in fantasy-science fiction and one can’t enjoy many films without a certain ‘suspension of disbelief,’ but it is interesting to note that many leading academics are atheists that deny intelligent design (God) yet rely on a different intelligence (aliens) who use science to evolve humans into existence. The Word of God gave us fair warning about this and reminds us of our true origin.
“Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the Earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the Earth.” —Genesis 1:26
As for reincarnation, or multiple lives, the Bible leaves no doubt as to the truth and is very clear about this.
“We die only once, and then we are judged.” —Hebrews 9:27
“Jupiter Ascending” relies heavily on its visuals, special effects and likable leads (Kunis, Tatum) to enthrall the audience, however it is so weighed down by the number of unexplained inconsistencies and contradictory plot points so as to highlight the poor storytelling, not to mention the incredible lack of any real sense of peril. An adventure set amidst the beautiful tapestry of space finds itself strangely devoid of both the thrill and the humor audiences would hope for. For this, and the oddly inappropriate material, I cannot recommend the film, even to its younger intended audience.
Violence: Heavy to extreme / Profanity: Moderate / Sex/Nudity: Moderate to heavy
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.