Holy pop culture phenomenon!
Director Steven Spielberg brings us back to our childhood with Ready Player One, a cluster fest of everything 80s and pop culture. Starring Tyler Sheridan, Olivia Cooke, and Mark Rylance, this film goes Maximum Overdrive on nostalgia.
In 2045, every populated area in the world pretty much look like slums. To escape their sad reality, people opt to be in a virtual reality world/game called the OASIS, made by the late James Halliday (Rylance). Much like all of the players of OASIS, Wade Watts (Sheridan) aims to attain the Easter Egg of the so-called Anorak’s Quest, Halliday’s final creation. The one who can get the egg will acquire full ownership of the OASIS. Everyone wants the prize, especially Nolan Sorrento (Ben Mendelsohn), CEO of Innovative Online Industries, who plans to use OASIS to his personal greed.
Let’s state the obvious here… This film centers on a virtual reality world/game that the whole population would rather have than the real one, so it is expected that this should be better than the real world. Thanks to the visual effects and CGI, it seems so!
Also, pop culture references and Easter eggs (ahem) are scattered all over this film. Your favorite characters from films, video games, and shows are all here (it’s a hyperbole but you get the point).
The action sequences were fun and entertaining. Watching Chucky stab all of the IOI sixers was a neat treat. And seeing the Gundam model RX-78-2 fight Mechagodzilla is a fight I never knew I wanted to see!
Despite the pure entertainment I had with the film, it certainly has its flaws. For one, the supporting characters are one-dimensional. Aside Samantha Cook (Olivia Cooke), the three of the High Five are simply teenagers with cool-looking avatars. The plot twist of the gender of Hellen Harris (Lena Waithe) is the only thing that separates her from the other two male High Fives.
Also, Wade’s motivation to fight IOI was very weightless. IOI destroyed Wade’s community, killing his aunt and her boyfriend in the process. And we never really get much from their relationship enough to relate to Wade’s search for justice. Also, when he finally met Sorrento, he actually said the line “You killed my mother’s sister.” That line came off as very comedic rather than heartbreaking.
Ready Player One is a fun ride, with its narrative issues. But I would be lying if I say I did not enjoy it. This film is …