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PHOTOGRAPHY

AEON FLUX

DVD Review by David Blackwell

DETAILS: 92 minutes, two audio commentaries, five featurettes, theatrical trailer

STUDIO: Paramount/ Lakeshore/ MTV Films

RELEASE DATE: 4-25-2006

AEON FLUX is a different beast. While being a homage to the animated series, they have changed it to make it a linear narrative where the animated series was sometimes very experimental. They make Trevor Goodchild a sympathetic figure in the film where he is an arrogant scientist in the series. Aeon always questions in the animated show while she begins to question in the movie as it goes on. For the movie, it seems like Trevor has been split off into two characters: Trevor and his brother Orin.

The music, action, costume design, and production design are top notch. It has one of most unique visions of the future in sci-fi since BLADE RUNNER. AEON FLUX follows an assassin/rebel named Aeon Flux (Charlize Theron) who is a Monican agent with the mission of killing Chairman Trevor Goodchild (Martin Csokas) who is responsible for the last city on earth, a utopia called Bregna. However not everything goes as planned and she begins to question why she is doing it and why she seems to know Trevor. Sophie Okonedo plays a Monican agent who helps Aeon get into Trevor's compound. The movie is well cast (Pete Postlewaite and Frances McDormand also star) and it is the type of film that sci-fi films should be like more often. The only disappointments were AEON FLUX is too short (over before you know it) and I would have liked to know a little more about if the government of Bregna would have been any better if Monicans took control (or who exactly was behind them). AEON FLUX didn't do well at the box office in North America, but DVD has a way of making movies become cult movies or big hits with the renters. It is worth checking out.

VIDEO: 2.35:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen)

the transfer is clean and nice. Image detail is good and black values hold up well.

AUDIO: English 5.1 Dolby Digital, English 2.0 Dolby Surround, French 5.1

Subtitles: English, Spanish- feature film

English, French, Spanish- featurettes

Dialogue is easy to hear.

SPECIAL FEATURES: The disc is packed with interesting extras: two feature audio commentaries, five informative featurettes, and the original theatrical trailer (too bad it's Non-Anamorphic).

The first audio commentary is with producer Gale Ann Hurd and actress Charlize Theron. However, the second audio commentary with screenwriters Phil Hay and Matt Manfredi is the better and more informative of the two. They point out the homages to the animated series, the changes in the script and editing of the film, and what the director was aiming for. They inject some humor into it while Gale and Charlize are more serious for their track.

The five featurettes on the making of AEON FLUX are about an hour in total. Unlike many featurette filled with PR fluff on other movie DVDs, these five featurettes are packed with info and waste no space.

CREATING A WORLD: AEON FLUX shows the genesis of the live action film, storyboard art, the director wanting the movie to look organic, and how the film is speculative fiction.

THE LOCATIONS OF AEON FLUX looks at what Berlin locations used for the film and talk about the city they wanted to use originally for AEON FLUX (Brasilia). One of my favorite featurettes of the five.

THE STUNTS OF AEON FLUX first shows the training that Charlize went through for the role, the on-set stunts, and how she surprised the stunt coordinator (and outperformed most of the stunt people) as she did 95 percent of Aeon's stunts.

COSTUME DESIGN WORKSHOP OF AEON FLUX has costume designer Beatrix Aruna Paztor and the assistant costume designer go through the design elements that went into the costumes of AEON FLUX (stockings over shows for extras, leotard sewed onto boots for Aeon's costume) and how they derived the costumes from different periods. The director wanted the look to be something like the costumes for THE CONFORMIST.

TEH CRAFT OF THE SET PHOTOGRAPHER ON AEON FLUX takes a look at the job of the still photographer, the equipment he used, and the various stills he took when he was on the set of AEON FLUX.

 

FINAL ANLYSIS: AEON FLUX has a unique look. It will develop a cult following on DVD.

this review is (c)4-21-2006 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission (except for excerpts and a link to the review). Look for additional content at http://enterlinemedia.livejournal.com and send all comments to lord_pragmagtic@hotmail.com