Neill Blomkamp’s latest directorial sees him returning to a similar world to which we saw in his debut, District 9. Though many await the inevitable sequel, some may be sated by this action flick which focuses again on segregation, this time via class; the ludicrously rich against everyone else. Matt Damon’s character is constantly beaten down on, whilst Jodie Foster perfectly represents the shallowly portrayed rich and mighty. Elysium is just gorgeous, even the scenes of the overly populated cities are a marvel to look at, and the spaceship porn thrown here and there amongst the sand beaten cities are the icing on the cake. Gazing at Elysium itself however is majestic, the vision and ideas behind this are truly an art form. Mixed in with some brilliant action sequences should make for a great film. However it is just an action film and not a whole lot more. The antagonists are shallow, their motives behind what they do are nonexistent, with actions that only the title of Dark Lord could justify. Foster’s character is mean because she is basically power hungry, she also has a highly off-putting accent, Damon’s CEO played by William Fichtner cares more about dirtied bed-sheets than his employees lives, and the main henchman, played by District 9‘s lead Sharlto Copley, is a murdering rapist. So as you can see the moral compass is quite clear on who you will side with. The lack of depth within characters is what makes this film less enjoyable than it’s half-brother District 9. The universe is beautiful and the ideas fantastic, the world needs to be explored more in some way but so do the characters. Blomkamp is a magnificent science-fiction director and deserves to sit in the chair for a long time.
Elysium is a visual masterpiece but needs to explore the depths before it reaches the stars.
Verdict – 3.5/5 Stars