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'Fly Me To The Moon' - not a smooth flight (IANS Movie Review)
Film: 'Fly Me To The Moon'; Director: Ben Stassen; Voiceovers: Trevor Gagnon, Philip Bolden, David Gore, Christopher Lloyd, Tim Curry, Robert Partick, Kelly Ripa; Rating: **
There's something about kids and dreams. They do not follow logic. But neither does anything worthwhile that has ever happened in the world. Yet scared elders dissuade children from following their dreams because they have burnt their fingers doing so.
'Fly Me To The Moon' suggests that one should follow one's dream, no matter how much you are dissuaded or how improbable it sounds. Even if it is the dream of a fly to reach the moon.
It is 1969 and the US is readying to send the first men to the moon. Meanwhile, three baby flies who live at a dump near Cape Canaveral - Nat, Scooter and IQ - dream of hitching a ride on Apollo 11 and become the first flies on the moon.
Everyone chides their dreams. The only one who does not is Grandpa Amos, an old but once adventurous fly. He tells the kids to believe in themselves.
After much struggle, they do manage to land on the moon, on the way saving the day for the three human astronauts. However, as the images of the flight are broadcast live worldwide, the leader of the Russian flies, on seeing American flies succeed where they have not, sends a bad-ass rogue fly to mission control in America to sabotage the Astronaut's return to earth. Thus, while our three little flies battle odds of survival in space, it is up to the resourceful Grandpa to save the day for them down on earth.
The idea of 'Fly Me...', of believing in one's dreams, is good. The 3D animation -- this was one of the first films made with the technology used later in 'Avatar' -- is spectacular. The 3D of the rocket's take-off and flight in space is breathtaking.
Where the film flops, however, is in the story. There are too many coincidences for the comfort of the viewer. One of the surest signs of bad writing is when the writer uses coincidences to tie loose ends, instead of imagining and coming up with something ingenious.
The harder the struggle, the sweeter the victory. However, the struggle of our three flies does not seem hard enough; hence their victory does not seem enjoyable enough.
Due to this, the audience rarely gets to connect with the story. The film is also too preachy, with lines that have been used a million times in different films before.
The beauty of any fantasy film is the skill of the filmmakers to make the fantasy seem real. 'Fly Me...' to the moon fares badly on this account and till the end remains just that, an unbelievable fantasy.
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