By Cody (Phoenix, Arizona)
Serenity is a theatrically released conclusion to the Firefly TV-series created by Joss Whedon which was cancelled by Fox Studios. Joss Whedon who you may know as the director and writer for Marvel’s The Avengers both wrote and directed this movie. This was Joss Whedon’s first theatrically released film that he directed. It’s important to know that this film was also release by Universal not Fox Studios.
Don’t let the fact that the movie takes place in a different solar system and 500 years in the future fool you into believing this is a sci-fi because it’s not, it is a western set in space. The greatest aspect of Serenity is not the action or the special effects, though they are good, what makes Serenity a jewel is the characters and their dialogue which were both flawlessly crafted by Joss Whedon.
The characters are all very diverse and come from different backgrounds, we have the captain (more on him below), the pilot, doctor, soldier, mercenary, preacher and more. They have such depth to them and the dialogue between each character shows levels of emotions. Throughout the movie there are also several situations where the characters (especially the captain) question their own morality.
The best character in the movie hands down is Captain Malcolm Reynolds played by Nathan Fillion. If I were to make a list of the top five ship captains in movie history, Mal Reynolds will be on there. Just as Han Solo was an awesome smuggler with a heart deep inside, Malcolm Reynolds would be our galaxy’s version of Captain Solo. Nathan Fillion was born to play Malcom Reynolds. He delivers his lines perfectly and his attitude perfectly matches every conflict the crew of Serenity comes across. He often has to rely on his wit and sarcasm to get out of situations but it’s also noteworthy that he is willing to take risks even with his life on the line. Captain Reynolds has scenes where he is forced to take a step back from his attitude as a cold, uncaring space smuggler to a person with raw emotion and a loving personality and the actions he takes with his loving side ultimately lead to more consequences.
The villain is also a man like Captain Reynolds with many layers. He’s a government agent but has many qualities that make him human, yet he is a skilled assassin that will see his mission completed because the operative believes what he’s doing is the right thing. However, by the end of this movie through events I won’t discuss, you actually feel a sort of sorrow for the operative and end up liking him as a person. (Yeah by the end, you will like the villain as a human). I will say this, the operative is only a face for the real villain which is the government of the Alliance.
I can’t discuss too much about any particular part of the movie because it leads to another part, then another, and I’d have to give away so many spoilers.
I do like how there are many underlying messages in the movie that I didn’t quite get until I watched the movie a few time, one is that to be victorious you have to believe in something, it doesn’t even have to be God, yourself, or your friends but the cause you fight for. Another lesson is that when a line is crossed a stand has to be made and that the actions of a small group can influence millions if not billions.
If you enjoy action too, you’ll have a blast with this movie because there are several action scenes capped off by a fulfilling and sort of poetic ending.
If you haven’t seen Joss Whedon’s TV show Firefly then you may find some points confusing and a few issues with how things are explained but I think you’d still at least enjoy the film.
If you have Netflix, Serenity & Firefly are on Netflix or buy them at any place that sells movies.