March 29, 2018

Ready Player One is in theaters on March 29th, 2018.

Ready Player One stars Tye Sheridan as Wade Watts, a young man from 2045 Ohio that is obsessed with the Oasis, a virtual reality world that allows anyone to become anything they want, as long as their imagination allows it. Without this great cast, which also includes Ben Mendelsohn, Olivia Cooke, Simon Pegg and Mark Rylance, it cannot work as well as it does. But this is Steven Spielberg we’re talking about, so a wooden plank could play the lead and it’d be watchable.

Going into Ready Player One, I cannot deny that I was a little nervous. I was disappointed in what I thought was going to be the E.T. of this generation with A Wrinkle in Time, because I firmly believed in Ava DuVernay, her talent, and her vision to inspire the young people of the world to adventure. Also, I consider myself a pretty big film fan, but I cannot deny that there are MANY movies, especially from the 80s, that I have yet to see. And this film is full of amazing references to movies from those years. But what I can say after walking out of Ready Player One is this; Spielberg doesn’t need someone to inspire this younger generation like he did decades ago, he’ll just make a new movie and do it all over again.

No, Ready Player One is not as great as E.T. or many other Spielberg films, but what I can say is this source material paired with the legendary director was a match made in heaven. This film touches on young love in today’s age, as well as the influence of gaming and VR in our future, and it’s executed beautifully. I have heard many critics that I admire say that this film’s love story is thrown at you quickly and that is somewhat true. But to me, and people in my age group, it might not seem so off putting. Let me explain why.

Being an annoying millennial, there are aspects to the internet and human interaction that are completely crazy to normal people. The idea of someone spending most of their time in a virtual world, leaving them to fall in love with the first person of the opposite sex that has common interests, is HIGHLY common today. For instance, my girlfriend and I are big gamers, and we have encountered countless stories where guys “fall in love” with a girl gamer just being interested in playing the same games. It’s completely outrageous and usually embarrassing for these men afterwards, but they don’t interact with people face-to- face. So, the interaction of daily conversations about video games that they love with girls they’d never approach in real life is magic to them.

So why does the love story not feel rushed to me? Without bringing in real spoilers, there is a quick line of dialogue that sets up that Wade has seen a particular player’s Twitch streams and game tutorials online, and it’s quite obvious that he has a crush, even though he’s never seen her in real life. This gives him a false sense of an already existing relationship with this person. I’ve often seen this with fans meeting YouTube creators and feel they know the person because they hang out with them every day, just on their computer screens. This false relationship leads him to fall in love quickly once he meets her in the Oasis and she’s everything he wants her to be, even after she points out that not only is it rushed but that he doesn’t even really know her in the first place.

What’s great about this movie, and why I think it will inspire many people of the younger generation, is that it is a massive adventure about bravery and standing up for what you believe in, while all taking place in a virtual world. But the underlying message of it is to take the headset off, or in our case put the phones down, and live in the real world.

I would highly recommend checking this one out and seeing it on the biggest screen possible. The visual effects work extremely well, and you will have a roller coaster ride of an experience with Spielberg’s unbelievable action sequences. Have fun and I’ll see you at the theater!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5

LoganLogan (Contributor) is a Texas native and a massive fan of all genres of film. You can find him talking about movies on YouTube as half of the CraZCouple or in line for the latest Star Wars/Comic Book film.
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Ready Player One takes place in the dystopian future of 2044. The world is overpopulated, unemployment rates are higher than ever and energy shortages are very common. To escape this terrible life Wade Watts (played by Tye Sheridan) jumps into the VR world of the Oasis. But when the creator of the Oasis dies, he releases a video stating that whoever finds all his easter eggs will win all of his fortune. After five years no one had found the first key...until Wade comes across it. Will Wade be able to find all the easter eggs and save the Oasis or will it be taken over by the corporate company IOI?

“Ready Player One” was directed by Steven Spielberg (who previously directed “E.T” and “Jurassic Park”) and was based on the book written by Ernest Cline. To start my review I want to explain that I had read the book prior to seeing the film and this is one of my most hyped films of the year. That being said I unfortunately found Ready Player One to be a disappointment. Now this film is not a bad film, actually it is the opposite. But the story was incredibly rushed and goes completely off the rails of the original source material. This is what will most likely divide fans of the book from the other fans.

Acting wise, Tye Sheridan (previously seen in “Mud” and “X-Men Apocalypse”) did a good job playing Wade/Perzival the main protagonist. Olivia Cooke (previously seen in “Ouiji” and “The Signal”) also had a good performance playing Art3mis, but the stand out was Lena Waithe (previously seen in “Masters of None” and “The Comeback”) as Aech. As another positive, I think Spielberg did a good job balancing the CGI world of the Oasis with the real world. And the easter eggs in this film were absolutely brilliant. Anything from the BTTF Delorean to the Iron Giant could be in the Oasis.

Now where I begin to have problems with this film is the story. It felt very rushed and things were not explained very well. I also felt that Ben Mendelsohn’s (previously seen in “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” and “The Dark Knight Rises”) portrayal of Sorrento was very cartoonish and felt too silly for the film. I also think that the changes made to TJ Miller’s (previously seen in “Big Hero 6” and “Deadpool”) character I-R0K really hurt his character in the long run.

Over all this film has a great concept from a brilliant source material, but the translation we had on screen is just a rushed story with characters that are not fully realized. There are some great action sequences and awesome easter eggs. But as a fan of the book, it did not meet the level of quality I would have expected from Spielberg. I am going to still recommend everyone with interest in this film to check it out, it is definitely a fun watch. I will probably be seeing this film one more time before it leaves theatres to get a second opinion on it.

Rating: 3 out of 5

Cabell Cabell (Contributor) is a filmmaker from Tampa, Florida. He will watch just about any film but when he's not reviewing the latest hits he spends time directing films of his own.
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