Author Topic: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)  (Read 1889 times)

Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #30 on: February 07, 2019, 03:32:00 PM »
The box office performance of Alita: Battle Angel won't even factor into it.  It just won't.  The production of further Avatar sequels will be entirely dependent on the performance of the initial sequels.  Again, studios aren't going to lay the blame of a flop at the feet of the producer, especially if that producer is James Cameron; the guy who holds the record for making the highest grossing movies in the history of cinema.

Famous directors often act as a producer for a film that they want to see get made; to help secure funding and to help attract a wider audience, through name recognition.  They do so because they like the premise of the film and in the hope that it will be a hit because their name will be on all of the advertising.  They're not in fear, that should it fail, they'll have trouble securing funding for their own future directorial pursuits.  Quentin Tarantino wasn't shitting bricks, worrying about the future of his career, should Eli Roth's Hostel bomb at the box office.

No studio is going to say "hmm, this Avatar sequel underperformed but perhaps we'll forge ahead with the other sequels regardless.  Oh no, hold on!  That Alita: Battle Angel movie that Cameron produced was a flop!  Cancel all Avatar sequels immediately.  We would have made the sequels but because a movie he produced also flopped, everything is now null and void".  That's not how it works.

If Cameron had directed, instead of produced, Alita: Battle Angel and it flopped, then I could see that potentially factoring in to a decision regarding the future of Avatar (although, it would be a minuscule factor, compared to the performance of the Avatar sequel itself).

This is all rather a moot point of course because the Avatar sequels are going to do absolute gangbusters at the box office.  I wish that they wouldn't; I'd like nothing more than to see them crash and burn because I'm a miser and I fucking hated the first one but I don't represent the majority of the cinema going public.  However, I do suspect that the sequels won't come close to achieving the box office phenomenon of the first movie (with diminishing returns for each subsequent sequel) but I severely doubt that they'll outright bomb.  I think they'll be big hits and even if they do underperform in America and other parts of the world, then China will surely be there to pick up the slack.

To me this seems like a bit more than a director just lending his name to a film, Cameron hasn't just produced it he's also co written it hasn't he? the film itself as well isn't going typical lower/midbudget release a big name director gets behind like say Jackson with District 9, its a massive blockbuster and I can imagine Cameron's involvement is actually the main reason its been made at all.

If Avatar 2 does well I'd agree Alita potentially failing would quickly be forgotten but if neither do well that's probably worse for him in terms of getting future funding.

You could argue I spose Cameron might actually end up being quite smart with his timing here, you had a backlash against Avatar in the years afterwards but you could argue when the sequel actually comes out your almost into the realms of nostalgia for a lot of the audience who might have seen it in their teens.

Mister Six

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #31 on: February 07, 2019, 05:48:18 PM »
Sorry but Eddie's right - Alita will have no bearing at all on Avatar's sequels. Absolutely none.

Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #32 on: February 07, 2019, 06:10:48 PM »
Poundland: Grundy Street, Hull 2022: A Burtons tight fit suit wearing Robert Rodriguez walks in and belittles a family buying cheap Haribo and bleach; " Whadda ya mean, you don't remember Alita: Battle Agent?... Its over there for one pound quid, next to the Mini Cheddars mulitipack"

St_Eddie

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #33 on: February 07, 2019, 06:34:47 PM »
Sorry but Eddie's right - Alita will have no bearing at all on Avatar's sequels. Absolutely none.

Thank you. It's not something which is up in the air and up for debate.  It won't have an impact on the future of the Avatar franchise and that's all there is to it.  I don't care for the way that Hollywood operates and I sure as shit don't care for the continuation of Avatar as a franchise (and it is a 'franchise'... urgh) but it is what it is.

James Cameron isn't going to lose credibility in Hollywood because a movie which he produced, floped.  No way, no how.  It's not how Hollywood operates.  A director is judged by the profit margins of the movies which he/she directed.  A producer is judged by the movies which he/she produced.  The two are completely separate.

"Oh, you provided craft services for a movie which flopped, ergo we factor that dodgy egg salad into our decision to allow you to to compose any further soundtracks, even though you're renowned for providing the most popular soundtracks in all of cinema's history".  No.  Just no.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2019, 06:54:03 PM by St_Eddie »

St_Eddie

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #34 on: February 07, 2019, 06:45:26 PM »
Obligatory edit glitch removal.

surreal

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #35 on: February 09, 2019, 03:47:12 PM »
It is a mess plotwise.
The lead, Rosa Salazar is full of charm, though I don't know if that's just to do with humans being predisposed to like large eyes.

It's borderline disturbing that Nickelodeon non-threatening bad boy meets world is in Robert Rodriguez cosplay.

Like Ghost in the Shell, it thinks it's futurescapes are a wonder to behold. But in reality it's all been done before.
Also, is the city that bad a place to live. It looks more like a tourist destination for hipster backpackers - of which there appear to be many.
Plus, there's easy access to what looks like lovely countryside.

The plot is all over the place. Her mission of vengeance seems to be suddenly derailed in order to play rollerball.

The worst thing: It's dull. Just far too dull.

Mostly agree with this, just back from watching it - I thought it was better than I expected but it does start to drag a bit towards the end.  It was quite a bit darker than I expected it to be both in the violence and some of the deaths.

I understand why it ended abruptly as it did, seeing the very famous actor cameo right at the end practically screamed "sequel" so I guess they are planning the confrontation for the follow-up, rather than tag a half-hearted attempt on to this one.

I'd watch it again I think, enjoyed it overall 7.5/10

Kelvin

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #36 on: February 10, 2019, 05:51:24 PM »
I thought it was awful. Never read the source material, but I'm guessing a lot was cut out, because the film has extremely odd pacing, especially towards the end, when the dramatic beats with the boyfriend are basically repeated straight after one another, and the dad goes from hating the dangerous sport to putting up absolutely no objection, and not even looking that bothered, later on.

It's just a consistently bad script, with mostly bad performances, and absolutely no subtlety or nuance whatsoever. Moments like her big speech in the bar, and the guy talking about his sword belonging to the shitar of Gobblegook, son of Dathamere, it was actually laugh out loud (or into my hand) bad for me. The effects were quite good, especially on Alita, who moves very gracefully, but the only thing I consistently enjoyed was the chemistry between her and the boyfriend - although even that features her literally putting her heart in his hand and telling him to take it, like some kind of psycho stalker.

In fact, that scene is a good example of how weirdly misjudged the tone is at times, with another example being the boyfriend effectively telling her: "I only chop off all their limbs and leave them paralyzed, I'm not a murderer", as if that still wouldn't make him an absolute cunt. Maybe the source material makes his situation look more dire, to provide more context for what he does, but in the film, it's hard to have any sympathy with him after that point.       

It's just full of idiotic scenes. Why didn't the squad jump over the big spinning blade, rather than lying down to shoot it? Why did the wife seem evil and heartless even before she left the Doctor? Why does Alita know what all kinds of things are (like dogs and swords), but hasn't even heard of an orange before? I can overlook inconsistencies like these if the film is good enough in other respects, but it's just emblematic of how sloppy everything about the film was, really. 
« Last Edit: February 10, 2019, 08:14:34 PM by Kelvin »

samadriel

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #37 on: February 11, 2019, 03:40:17 AM »
In fact, that scene is a good example of how weirdly misjudged the tone is at times, with another example being the boyfriend effectively telling her: "I only chop off all their limbs and leave them paralyzed, I'm not a murderer", as if that still wouldn't make him an absolute cunt.

In the manga, cybernetics are so prevalent that you can get by in life as long as you have an intact brain -- I assume in the movie he's stealing spinal columns like in the book?  A doctor like Ido can get a victim walking again with replacement body parts.  That's why Hugo thinks what he's doing is acceptable, although he's clearly wrong.

samadriel

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #38 on: February 14, 2019, 01:42:58 PM »
I hope this does well in China, they'll watch any old tat, and I want more Ed Norton/Desty Nova!  Yeah, I'm tragic.  Even if I weren't slavishly dedicated to Alita, the fight choreography is lovely.

chveik

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #39 on: February 14, 2019, 05:30:02 PM »
I hope this does well in China, they'll watch any old tat

that's weird though, they do have a tradition of great action films (King Hu, Hark Tsui, Zhang Yimou).

Mister Six

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #40 on: February 14, 2019, 11:21:18 PM »
that's weird though, they do have a tradition of great action films (King Hu, Hark Tsui, Zhang Yimou).

When people talk about the Chinese watching Transformers and similar shit, they mean the mainland Chinese. Mainland Chinese cinema severely limited by both government censorship and most of the money men being tasteless boors who are only interested in making a nice return on their investment. As a consequence most of the films produced in China are hackneyed, half-arsed shit, and most of the foreign efforts that make it into cinemas are franchise pablum like Jurassic World.

King Hu and Hark Tsui are/were based in Hong Kong or Taiwan. Taiwan is basically a separate country from China and at the time HK was a British colony. As a consequence were able to make the films they wanted to make. Zhang made his name in mainland China when things were a little bit looser than today, in the late 80s, and has become sufficiently powerful enough that he can pursue his interests - although his latest film has been pulled from Berlin, likely due to government censorship: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/13/world/asia/zhang-yimou-berlin-film-festival.html

There are still interesting Chinese directors but they're mostly making self-funded zero-budget movies under the radar because there's just no way to do it through the proper channels.

Anyway, the upshot is that mainland Chinese audiences generally have low expectations for films, and more or less no "taste". Obviously there are film buffs and people who make the effort to find good stuff online, but they're in the minority. Not the case in Hong Kong and Taiwan, which have foreign films and well-established film industries (although HK's is becoming flooded with mainland money, so films are leaning more towards self-censorship, and as I understand it Taiwan's industry is fairly poorly funded these days).

Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #41 on: February 15, 2019, 08:26:49 AM »
I thoroughly enjoyed Alita. Might even go again.

Mister Six

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #42 on: February 18, 2019, 12:20:47 AM »
So after writing fucking pages of nonense on this thread, as is usual for me, I actually watched the film and really enjoyed it. I wouldn't say the criticisms upthread are without merit (although stuff like the bounty hunters' bar speech is clearly played for comic effect, not high drama) but they didn't bother me much, and I thought it did a grand job of weaving together a lot of disparate plot strands fairly well and establishing an interesting world that I'd certainly like to see more of. Shame it does look likely to get a sequel.

Kelvin

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #43 on: February 18, 2019, 01:12:20 AM »
(although stuff like the bounty hunters' bar speech is clearly played for comic effect, not high drama)

Well, the reaction is played for laughs, but her speech is still meant to represent her stepping up and finding her leadership qualities. Maybe that was a bad example, though.

Mister Six

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Re: Alita: Battle Angel (2019)
« Reply #44 on: February 18, 2019, 01:21:42 AM »
No, it's supposed to show the last vestiges of her idealism and naiveté. She fails to do anything other than cause a bar brawl, and only gets help from that one bounty hunter because the baddie cunted a dog.

She doesn't have an leadership qualities, and in fact never leads anyone at any point.

I agree that they bungled the doctor's reaction to the motorball though - that should have been a big moment of him showing he's prepared to let her be her own woman but they just gloss over it. Same with her calling him dad after pointedly telling him she's not his daughter earlier in the film.