Journey to the Center of the Earth

Not rated yet!
Director
Eric Brevig
Runtime
1 h 33 min
Release Date
10 July 2008
Genres
Action, Science Fiction, Adventure, Comedy, Family
Overview
On a quest to find out what happened to his missing brother, a scientist, his nephew and their mountain guide discover a fantastic and dangerous lost world in the center of the earth.
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Crosswalk1
Cross Walk



(Reviewers' Site/Bio)

  • It's a Bumpy Journey to the Center of the Earth
    Movies DVD Release Date:  October 28, 2008Theatrical Release Date:  July 11, 2008Rating:  PG (for intense adventure action and some scary moments)Genre:  Science FictionRun Time:  92 min.Director:  Eric BrevigActors:  Brendan Fraser, Josh Hutcherson, Anita Briem, Seth Myers, Garth GilkerAt a crucial point in Walden Media’s adaptation of Jules Verne’s Journey to the Center of the Earth, a young boy who finds himself in need of answers to deal with dangers in Verne’s world exclaims, “I really wish I’d read that book!” It’s a sentiment that will be shared by many who choose this filmed adaptation over Verne’s novel. Films that appeal to the whole family are so rare that whenever one comes along that doesn’t impress as much as it should, it’s tough to break the news. Walden Media’s Journey to the Center of the Earth is such a film. It has some fun moments and a few thrills, all without bad language or overheated romance, while its dangers from creatures and beasts result in minimal bloodshed. However, a film can’t be recommended based on what it lacks. It has to have certain elements—chiefly, a compelling story, told in an engaging manner. Verne’s novel is a classic, but this screen version of Journey is tedious at times, with one-dimensional characters and hit-and-miss special effects.Brendan Fraser stars as vulcanologist Trevor Anderson, whose lab is about to be shut down. Trevor has been fruitlessly pursuing the theories of his brother Max, who was a “Vernian”—someone who believed Jules Verne’s writings were more than just science fiction. When Trevor’s nephew, Sean (Josh Hutcherson), comes for a visit, he brings Max’s copy of Jules Verne’s Journey to the Center of the Earth, with margin notations that dovetail with Trevor’s theories and the views.Hoping to salvage his lab and restore the reputation of Max, who disappeared years earlier, Trevor takes Sean on a trip to Iceland, where, thanks to a ridiculous plot twist involving in-flight access to Google, they meet Hannah (Anita Briem), the daughter of another Vernian. She’s skeptical of her late father’s Vernian beliefs but agrees to lead the trio in its search for confirmation of Trevor’s theories.The group encounters peril and riches inside a volcanic mountain before falling to the center of the earth, where they find confirmation of Max’s theories. Under threat by rising heat levels—the temperature crests 110 degrees Fahrenheit, although the actors barely break a sweat—the group tries to make its way back to earth’s surface. Journey to the Center of the Earth features multiple freefalls, a wild ride through a mineshaft, and all sorts of strange creatures—some gentle, some menacing. That makes for some fun moments, but the film’s attempts at humor are often painful (in a slow-moving car, a boy says, “I just saw a goat in the passing lane,” while giant mushrooms are dubbed “humongous fungus”). An overactive musical score is competently performed but cueing the audience’s emotional reactions at every turn. There’s also the mystifying matter of Trevor’s collection of quarters. Seen stored in several large glass jars, the total dollar amount of the collection is surely significant, but when it’s used to purchase next-day airfare to Iceland, then to pay a mountain guide the equivalent of 5,000 kronur an hour during the trio’s longer than expected journey, one wonders just how many jars of quarters Trevor must have to cover all those expenses.Fraser isn’t given much to work with in terms of dialogue—he’s too busy fighting off sea monsters and dinosaurs, falling into the occasional abyss, and going on wild rides in an old dinosaur skull. Hutcherson does OK as the pubescent nephew competing with Fraser for the attention of Hannah, but Briem fails to convince us that she has serious issues with her father’s worldview. Worst of all are a diary-reading episode and funeral involving Max and Sean. Both scenes fall flat.Of course, dialogue and emotion aren’t strengths of most summer movies. When Journey drops any notion that it’s a thoughtful look into humanity and earth science, and concentrates on being a thrill ride, it succeeds in fits and starts. The lulls, however, only serve to highlight the weakness of the film’s script. To compensate, Journey to the Center of the Earth is filmed in digital 3-D, and the presentation has its share of “wow” moments—a mouthful of water spit at the camera, a tape measure that appears to extend out into the theater, and the inevitable yo-yo—while the film’s other special effects occasionally rise above the norm.Nevertheless, a more full-orbed film adaptation of Earth will have to wait for the next attempt. googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('gpt-ad-1'); }); if (gptClientWidth >= 992 && gptClientWidth <= 1000000) googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('gpt-ad-2'); }); CAUTIONS: Language:  None. Smoking/Drinking:  None. Sex/Nudity:  Two kisses. Violence:  A man’s dead body is discovered, but not shown; plants attack; flying fish attack; a sea beast attacks; a dinosaur attacks. ]]>
    ...
    (Review Source)

Kyle Smith1
National Review



(Reviewers' Site/Bio)

  • Review: "Journey to the Center of the Earth" (2008)
    Kyle Smith review of “Journey to the Center of the Earth” 92 minutes/Rated PG “Journey to the Center of the Earth” is aggressively bland, a display of X-treme mildness, a cinematic saltine. Like many children’s movies, this remake of the Jules Verne adventure novel, starring Brendan Fraser as a scientist following the trail of his lost brother from an Icelandic cave into the bowels of the world, would be more accurately described as a grandparents’ movie. Little kids brought up on “Shrek” and “The Incredibles” have nothing in their memory banks to compare to this movie’s air of resolute fustiness, although Disney used to churn out earnest live-action epics like this one as late as the late 1970s. The movie’s principal and only hook is its 3-D effects, which are still eye-catching enough to make the film of some interest. Three-D is enjoying a renaissance because the technology has improved so much and because theater owners are getting worried about their business evaporating once every American has a TV the size of a pool table (and everyone in other countries gets used to simply buying pirated movies on the street). Last fall’s 3-D “Beowulf” was a rousing if campy spectacle, and more 3-D films are coming. “Journey,” though, isn’t imaginative with the effects. A yo-yo jumps out of the screen, and the antennae of a bug. On three occasions, characters spit on us, the kind of tepid comedy that goes with the low-level thrills here. The linebackerish Fraser isn’t the obvious choice to play Trevor, a bookish fellow who gets intrigued by a paperback copy of the novel “A Journey to the Center of the Earth” left behind by his missing brother more than a decade ago. The paperback is full of notations that lead Trevor to Iceland to search for another scientist who was apparently working with his brother. Tagging along with Trevor is his brother’s son (Josh Hutcherson, recently seen in the equally wholesome but vastly superior kid flick “Bridge to Terabithia”), who plays a surly, bored youth addicted to his PSP. In Iceland, the two find the scientist they’re looking for is dead. The man’s skeptical daughter Hannah (Anita Briem) pronounces her old man and Trevor’s brother “Vernists” who took everything Jules Verne wrote for sci-non-fi. To them, Verne’s books were simply guides to the possible. Hannah offers to show Trevor and his nephew the site that supposedly led to the earth’s core, for a price. When everyone finally gets down to the spelunking, barely a few seconds have passed before a rock slide blocks them from the outside world, but no one seems much worried about this. Instead they keep poking deeper and deeper. When they, for instance, come across an abandoned underground railway system used for mining, they jump on the nearest handcart and go as fast as they can without wondering whether this is actually a good idea when there are blind turns and rollercoaster curves. (Still, the rail scene at least offers a taste of the amusement park; it’s the most exciting part.) This is the kind of movie where people working in 105 degree heat look less sweaty than if they had just done 25 crunches in an air-conditioned gym, and when the group plummets thousands of feet to a certain death, they crack little jokes as they fall. Fraser, who had an energetic presence in the Mummy movies and even did well as a bumbler in the comedy remake of “Bedazzled,” barely registers, and Hutcherson’s transformation from sulkiness to gee-whizzery doesn’t much challenge him either. Briem is brisk and watchable as the all-knowing Hannah, but the film forgets to throw in much attraction between her and Trevor. Instead, thing move forward as if in a simple video game. The characters work through one situation — say, a stormy sea beset by flying toothy fish — as easily as if they’re walking across the room (”batter up!” says Trevor, as he and Sean bash the little critters with sticks), and then go on to the next stage (say, hopping over a series of stepping stones floating in space above an abyss). The movie’s goal is to be compared to wholesome 1950s kiddie actioners, the kind that little Chip and Maryjane forget by the time they make it home to play kick the can. Mission accomplished.]]>
    ...
    (Review Source)

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