Gullivers Travels Movie Review
admovieso | April 4, 2012 | No comments
Unfortunately for this upcoming movie, 3D adds nothing of value or entertainment to new movie release “Gulliver.” It seems like studios are beginning to add 3D to movies to cover up weak characters or a weak story. “Gulliver” is not the worst offender in this area but the 3D makes the new movie too full of gimmicks.
It’s interesting that librarians and teachers have always shelved Jonathan Swift’s 1726 novel “Gulliver’s Travels” in the children’s section when it is, in fact, a satire of the corrupt English society of Swift’s time. It’s about man’s preference for vice and irrational behavior over common sense and goodness. This also happened to Mark Twain’s “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.” The idea of a normal sized person in the midst of a kingdom of itty bitty that relegates it to a world full of trolls and fairy princesses.
In this new movie picture, Black is a shy mailroom clerk for a New York newspaper. Gulliver, played by Black, has a big crush on a travel editor, played by Amanda Peet, but can’t bring himself to ask her on a date. When a fellow worker talks him into trying, he finds himself talked into doing a travel assignment, rather than going on a date.
He goes to the Bermuda Triangle and is caught in a storm and then thrown into a portal that takes him to the land of Lilliput. Here Swift’s story comes into play. This kingdom is reminiscent of 18th century England and is inhabited by mostly British actors.
The Lilliputians do everything they can to imprison Gulliver but he escapes and becomes a hero to the Lilliputians. In one of the scenes he puts out a fire by urinating on the flames in the royal palace, a scene that’s actually from Swift’s book.
The once meek Gulliver is now encouraged to exaggerate his own past, using film ideas from “Star Wars” to “Titanic.” As happens in most comedies generated by movie studios, Gulliver must confront his own flaws and improve his personality.
He also gets in the middle of a love triangle between the princess of the island, played by Emily Blunt, her admirer, played by Chris O’Dowd, and a commoner, played by Jason Segel. Segel is the one who really loves her. There’s a big lack of imagination displayed here. Director Rob Letterman, known for “Shark Tales” and “Monsters vs. Aliens,” and writers Joe Stillman, known for “Shrek” and “Shrek 2,” and Nicholas Stoller, known for “ Forgetting Sarah Marshall,” steal their ideas from everything from “Cyrano de Bergerac” to “Iron Man” and even from Black’s own “School of Rock.” Billy Connolly, James Corden, Chris O'Dowd, Catherine Tate