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Movie Breakdown: Ready Player One

March 29, 2018

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Pre-Screening Stance:

What was the last blockbuster that Steven Spielberg directed?  2011′s The Adventures Of Tintin?  Does that even count?  I think I’d lean more towards Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull, which was in 2008.  Can you believe that was 10 years ago?  That’s way too damn long to go without a spectacle from Spielberg.  Bring on Ready Player One.

Post-Screening Ramble:

I was a little worried at the start of Ready Player One.  There’s a lot of narration to help establish the film’s hero, a teenager named Wade/Parzival (Tye Sheridan), his world, a rough looking Earth set in 2045, and the Oasis, a virtual wonderland with limitless possibilities.  You also get looped in on a quest put together by James Halliday (Mark Rylance), the creator of the Oasis.  It was the last thing he did before he died, and whoever solves his grand mystery (he left behind clues that lead to three keys) will gain sole ownership of the much ballyhooed VR game.  Naturally, anyone who is anyone is on the hunt for said treasure, but the ones to watch out for are Innovative Online Industries (IOI) and their leader Sorrento (Ben Mendelsohn), a shady, ad-loving man who desperately want to own the Oasis.  As I mentioned, it’s quite a bit of setup, but once you trudge through the details, the film really opens up.  I not only found myself dazzled by the visuals on display, but Steven Spielberg drops in enough pop culture references to make even the strongest hater of yesterday feel a tinge of nostalgic bliss. Here’s what I truly loved about Ready Player One though, it’s all heart.  Its main characters just want a better world, in and outside of the Oasis, and their drive to make it happen is difficult to not find infectious.  I also appreciate that none of the film’s references come off as forced or dumb, they actually feel curated and celebrated. This is certainly a movie that could have easily been a vehicle to sling toys, but instead it’s an enthusiastic high five to pop culture lovers everywhere.

This very entertaining movie is 100% worth your time.  Make sure you see it in a big theater with a big bucket of popcorn and with as many friends as possible.

One Last Thought:

I can’t even imagine how many pop culture references I missed in Ready Player One.  Some of them just barely flash on the screen.  Guess I’ll find out what I didn’t see once the internet does its thing and provides me a frame by frame breakdown of the film.

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