Friday, July 11, 2008

Journey to the Center of the Earth

“Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the center of the Earth.”

Years ago Trevor Anderson (Brendan Fraser) lost his brother. Now years later clues written in an old copy of Jules Verne’s novel lead Trevor and his nephew Sean (Josh Hutcherson) to Iceland. There, with the help of a local guide (Anita Briem), the explorers learn the fate of the missing scientist and discover a hidden world deep under the Earth’s surface which is eerily similar to that which Jules Verne described more than 140 years ago complete with a subterranean ocean, giant mushrooms, extinct species, and even dinosaurs.

There’s much to enjoy here, especially for those who get a chance to see the film in 3-D. The entire project was shot in Real D Cinema and provides some great 3-D moments (though, like other such films it also includes stretches without much to mention 3-D effects wise).

In terms of the non-3-D effects the film holds up pretty well capturing the unique look and style of the world at the center of the Earth by largely copying original illustrations from the novel. It captures both the wonder and danger of the tale quite well.

For a family adventure flick like this the acting is better than passable. The three leads work very well together. I was particularly impressed with Briem, who aside from an episode of Doctor Who I haven’t seen much of. There’s some nice unforced chemistry between her and Fraser which is better than what you find in most romcoms these days. Fraser and Hutcherson have a few good moments together as well.

If you are going to see the film, and I would recommend you do, I would strongly encourage the 3-D version. Although I think the film will still work without the added effects you will be missing out on part of the experience. Remember this isn’t a film which was adapted to be 3-D, but one which was shot completely for this format. For a list of theaters with 3-D screens able to show Real D films like this one click here.

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