I have decided, my lovely BuzzKillers, that I am designating myself the BuzzKill staff reporter on movies and books. Why? Because I love those two things and they don’t stress me out, or get me as many threats of violence, as when I write about things like women wanted to be treated like human beings. Don’t worry, those articles will still show up, as will my original pieces. It’s just that now I have settled on an avenue that will focus my writing and keep me in material. Coming up with random topics gets hard and overwhelming for somebody who works ungodly hours, has insomnia, depression, and anxiety issues, and can feel easily blah.
So, without further babbling, allow me to review for you another movie: Lucy.
There be SPOILERS ahead, friends.
Lucy is an interesting piece that was released in late July of 2014. The film was directed by Luc Besson and stars Scarlett Johansson (Lucy), Morgan Freeman (Professor Norman), Min Sik-Choi (Mr. Jang), and Amr Waked (Detective Del Rio).
I was excited when I first heard about this film. I have absolutely loved Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow in the Avengers movies. She has this ability to portray these strong characters without letting them get lost in the sexuality. I want to marry Scarlett Johansson, but I think my husband would have words with me. Anyway, the first trailer I saw had me all a dither with the possibility of a female-lead action film that didn’t appear to have an unneeded romantic subplot. Something that always gets crammed down our throats, if and when we can get a female action star, is that she’s all strong and capable, but ultimately needs her man to rescue her and give her… kisses.
I’m going to choke back my feminist rant for the moment.
Moving along, the movie wound up being much more cerebral than I was expecting. Admittedly, I had only seen the one trailer; so don’t put too much stock into that. The premise is that our girl, Lucy, is studying abroad in Taipei and has been seeing this sketchy character, Richard, for about a week. Richard forces her to deliver a suspicious briefcase to a mysterious Mr. Jang inside a super swanky hotel. Lucy’s obviously angry and just wants to go home. She marches into the hotel, scared as all of us would be, and asks for Mr. Jang. As she’s waiting, she notices a large group of thuggish looking men approach. Richard, who has been waiting outside, is shot while Lucy is grabbed and dragged upstairs.
To make a long story short, she is ultimately knocked out and stuffed with a bag full of blue crystals. She and three men are then told they’re now drug mules and get to travel back to their respective countries with the contraband. The cartel knows everything about them, so they can’t run.
Some things go wrong for Lucy and during transport her bag is broken open, allowing the drug to seep into her system. This drug suddenly unlocks more of her brain than humans typically use. She’s aware now, and she’s pissed.
While all of this has been happening, the scenes have been intercut with a college lecture being given by the man with the voice of god, Morgan Freeman. He’s a leading researcher in the field of brain science. I’m not, so we’re going with “brain science.” His lecture explores the possibilities of what would happen if people were able to unlock and use more than just the typical 10% of our cerebral capacity. When Lucy contacts him, he quickly sets up a meeting of the top researchers in his field and they’re ready when Lucy arrives. Lucy gets her hands on the rest of the drug and has the doctors help her ingest it all. The results are staggering.
This film got a lot of things right. When Lucy first gets dosed, there’s no time wasted with her trying to figure out what happened to her or having her be an emotional wreck while she comes to grips with her new knowledge. The whole point of the drug was that it opened up her brain. She knows exactly what happened and uses this information and the power it gives her to save herself.
As she grows stronger, she’s able to manipulate matter. The movie doesn’t cheapen this by having her be a constant martial arts marvel. Thugs come at her with guns and karate? She floats them to the ceiling, unable to move. Problem solved.
There is no romantic plot. She keeps Det. Del Rio with her and kisses him once. She’s already explained that she doesn’t feel pain or emotions anymore. She flat out tells Del Rio, she’s taking him with her to help her remember. End of that; she has bigger things to worry about at the moment. I finally got my female action star that can take care of things just fine on her own.
Now, here’s my big complaint: where are the other women in the film? There is a grand total of three women that Lucy interacts with. One is her brainless roommate, who appears for about 3 minutes. Another is a woman tattooing Mr. Jang. She is on screen for about thirty seconds and has no dialogue. The third is a nurse in a hospital whose only purpose is to let the men know Lucy is awake after being sedated. So, again I ask, where were all the women?
It’s a disturbing trend I see in films. There were so many places where we could have seen more female actors. All of the bad guys were men. All of the police officers were men. All of the doctors and professors and experts were men. Hell, even all of the ticketing agents at the three different airports were men.
Representation is a thing, people. I know for a fact that there are more than three women in the world and that there are, indeed, female cops, doctors, and bad guys. This film’s largest shortcoming is this. For a movie that seems to be all about the strong woman, there’s a disturbing lack of women. I complain about this because it tells me that I’m only important as a woman if I’m the main storyline and have the superpowers. This makes me sad.
Other than that, the film was fantastic. I do highly recommend you go see it. It’s not your average action flick. It will make you think and it will make you wonder what you could be capable of with more access to your own cerebral capacity.
I give it 4 popcorns out of 5.
In my next article, I’ll be reviewing the book Feed by author Mira Grant. See you then