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November 15 2005

BBC Film 2005 - Vote for 'Film of the Year'. Surely I don't even need to mention what film we should all vote for here... let's show the BBC the strength of us Whedonites!

Heh, this is something I've been pushing in phases..

Don't just vote - make sure you comments on why it means a lot to you - or more importantly why the movie connected to you.

If people could spread this one across blogs gradually it'd be very helpful.
Can you vote on this when not from the UK? Well, I mean, obviously you can, but will it get counted?
Honestly: don't know. They haven't specified either way, and it wasn't specified on the TV programme, either. By the way, the presenter of this show loved the movie ("Why on earth couldn't the three most recent Star Wars films have been a third as good as this?").
I voted and posted what I hope was an intelligent and passionate reason why. Fingers crossed Serenity will win. I'm not just saying this because I am a Whedon fan, but I truly do believe it is the best film I've seen this year.
I'd vote, but they didn't make FASTLANE: THE MOTION PICTURE this year.
I've voted as well. Didn't make a secret about me being from The Netherlands though, so I'm not sure if my vote'll get used at all.
I doubt they will award prizes outside the country so I didn't include my address. Did write an impassioned, yet well reasoned review though.;-)
"let's show the BBC the strength of us Whedonites!"

It seems to me that we had a chance to really show the strength of the 'Whedonites' last month ... and unfortanately failed miserably.
Hmm. Can't say as I agree with that little bit of opinion, there, rkayn.
I voted, and even though I'm not from the UK, I'm really hoping they use my review, as I finally got to use the phrase, "breathes life back into the dying lungs of science fiction."

:-D
I agree with Willowy. I can understand that we're a little disappointed that Serenity didn't do amazingly well, but as Joss has noted before, it wasn't for lack of trying, and the entire Browncoat community came together and supported the film for months, and many of us have seen the film multiple times and got other people to go and see it, and bought various bits of merchandise.

Joss and everyone else involved in the production side of things rose to the challenge and created an astounding film, and we did the best we could do, and sometimes things just don't work out like you want them to. The fact that the film was made at all and will always be there for people to enjoy is a victory for all of us who were interested in and supportive of Firefly.

Plus, I wouldn't say we failed miserably, in my opinion the problem was just with the general public, who I find are very close minded towards any sort of sci-fi or fantasy films unless they're very very big names, like Star Wars or Lord of the Rings. I don't think there was any way Serenity could have achieved their level of popularity no matter what. But getting to #1 in the UK box office and #2 (?) in the US was still quite an accomplishment.
If people could spread this one across blogs gradually it'd be very helpful.

Done.
Just voted. I wrote:

"Every now and then some film will jump up and smack me across the face so hard that I'll find it almost impossible to write a review. Joss Whedon's Serenity is one of these films. From beginning to end I sat agape, wondering when the next thrill, laugh, cry or scream would occur. And that's just from me. But really, in a summer of disappointment (well alright just Hitchhikers) it's amazing to find a good old fashioned adventure film, but in a break from the norm that's about something.

I'm a fan of Firefly the tv series for which this is the continuation or sequel, and what's particularly gratifying is that the film actually deepens the viewers appreciation of those stories. In giving some backstory to bring the uninitiated up to speed, the film actually gives some of the geography and characterisation which has gone before. This is material which surely would have been eeked out in the drip drip of weekly television, but here it's a shot in the arm, and enough to tempt me to go and watch the series again, even though I only just finished the last run through.

Strikingly, the film is not riddled with kisses to the past. The theme song does not appear and neither do we get to hear about the hero of canton. Old jokes ("I'll be in my bunk!") are not rerun for comic effect or catchphrase value. Those moments have become iconic because there were so few episodes of the series to be poured over and to give them extra weight here would be wrong.

This is about re-affirming the values and ideas of the series. Even with all the action and ship chases, this has a very literate script. There are conversations about faith, spirituality, what it is to be human and those values we hold dear. But the mood of the series has largely been replicated, but the crew have moved on. In some cases this is presented subtly -- the odd use of a christian name instead of a title, or arguments in places were once there was detante. In some cases, status quos which had developed by the final episode have slipped backwards for the needs of the story, but this feels generally natural. Relationships and friendships ebb and flow.

There performances are uniformally excellent, much as they were before. Stars will be made here and that's as it should be. Luckily everyone has largely signed on for future films so even if Summer Glau goes off and becomes the new Jodie Foster, she'll be back for more. As you would expect with the format, some characters simply don't get as much to do here, but that should be redressed in future 'episodes'. Vitally, though, everyone gets a memorable moment, a chance to shine, isn't forgotten.

The look of the series has largely been carried over. It's largely lensed with handheld cameras, sometimes right in the faces of the actors. The atmospheric lighting continues as well, keyholes all over. I've heard much criticism that it looks to much like the programme, but frankly that's idiotic because the look of the show was cinematic to begin with; in fact some of the photography has become a cliche in the meantime, for example the documentary feel to the ships in flight. The innovations continue here though -- there is a space battle which is positively impressionistic.

I don't know how the film played with a non-fan audience. The auditorium I was in laughed all the way through at the jokes and I even heard gasps. There was a man sitting behind me in a beany hat wearing shades and he seemed to enjoy himself. But as a biased fan I'd say that I can't think of a reason that you shouldn't be there over the weekend. I mean what else could you be doing?"
That's assuming there's a cinema nearby which is wierdly still showing it.
My local Odeon in Canterbury has been doing weekend-only showings for a month has only just stopped showing it last Saturday.

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