Review: 'The Day the Earth Stood Still'

( PG-13 ) ( Monitor Movie Guide )

Remake of sci-fi classic is an ecofriendly fantasy that fails to live up to the original.

Courtesy of WETA
Klaatu’s (Keanu Reeves) arrival on Earth in The Day the Earth Stood Still.

If, like me, you retain honeyed childhood memories of watching the sci-fi 1951 classic "The Day the Earth Stood Still" on late-night television, this remake starring Keanu Reeves is likely to be a letdown. But since when have remakes of classics equaled the originals? You'll be doing yourself a huge favor if you go into this movie with lowered expectations. Reeves plays the alien Klaatu who wants earthlings to shape up or ship out. Jennifer Connelly is the scientist who must convince Klaatu that we humans, who are turning the planet into a garbage dump, are redeemable. For most of the way this ecofriendly fantasy is pleasantly clunky, and Reeves, whose expressive range here is slim to none, is perfectly cast as the alien. Grade: C+ (Rated PG-13 for some sci-fi disaster images and violence.)

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