Chappie (2015)

2016 #45
Neill Blomkamp | 115 mins | streaming (HD) | 2.35:1 | USA & South Africa / English | 15 / R

ChappieNeill Blomkamp seems to be on M. Night Shyamalan’s career path: a massively-praised Oscar-nominated breakthrough genre movie, followed by a series of increasingly maligned follow-ups.

His latest is the story of a police robot that gets inducted into South African rap/gang culture. It’s incredibly idiosyncratic, and actually kind of interesting in its oddness and the way it exposes a different culture. So there’s something to be got out of it, but it feels like a failed experiment rather than a successful realisation of a bold idea.

Still, in the homogenised landscape of big-budget sci-fi movies, at least it’s something different.

3 out of 5

2 thoughts on “Chappie (2015)

  1. Not seen this yet. Sure I’ll get round to it. Prior to release it looked really promising but the bad reviews steered me clear- that Elysium film still leaves a bad taste in my mouth (so many good ideas for naught). Its funny how so many people are looking forward to his Alien 5, a film just plain misguided in my eyes and with this directors track record, well, time for even the most rabid Aliens fans to exercise caution I think. Mind, imagine the backlash if he messes THAT one up. I’d sit back and enjoy the shitstorm like it was some kind of wonderful sci fi panto. Nothing quite like hordes of angry fans venting their indignant wrath on Hollywood.

    Anyway, mindful this comment is longer than your original review I’ll bring this stream of conciousness to an end.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I guess he carries a lot of left-over goodwill from District 9 (which I’ve still not got round to!) He clearly has good/interesting/different ideas, so if he pulls off whatever he has in mind for Alien 5 then perhaps it will be great, but his execution is clearly variable, too. Caution, indeed.


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