Ready Player One: Film Review

I am a massive Steven Spielberg fan but I have to admit that I wasn’t fussed about Ready Player One at all because it just looked like a massive CGI fest, which is something I cannot stand, and while it is mega CG heavy, I loved the story so much that I just didn’t care.

Tye Sheridan is Wade Watts, who lives in a dystopian version of Columbus, Ohio in 2044. To escape from his life, he spends most of his time inside the OASIS, a virtual reality game created by James Halliday (Mark Rylance) and Ogden Morrow (Simon Pegg). Five years earlier, Halliday, then the sole owner, died but not before leaving three keys for players to find. The first to find all three will own the OASIS, so naturally competing games company IOI, lead by Nolan Sorrento (Ben Mendelsohn), want to win and will throw their unlimited resources at the pursuit.

When Wade is inside the OASIS he becomes his avatar Parzival, who drives a DeLorean and is best friends with Aech/Helen (Lena Waithe) and their crew is rounded out by love interest Art3mis/Samantha (Olivia Cooke), Daito (Win Morisaki) and Sho (Philip Zhao). These are CGI and don’t look realistically human (I don’t think they’re supposed to) so this was jarring at first because I felt like I was watching a video game not a movie, but once you get involved in the story, it isn’t a problem. You become even more invested in the avatars once you’ve seen them in the real world.

Halliday littered the OASIS with pop culture references from his favourite games and films so there are lots of gems for nerds to pick up on and it really tests your pop culture knowledge. Highlights for me included the T-Rex from Jurassic Park and a game set within The Shining. So cool! That was the word that popped into my mind a lot during the movie. The killer ’80s soundtrack helped that immensely.

The visual effects are absolutely perfect. The whole thing is stunning and genuinely blew my mind sometimes. I usually check out when there is an over-reliance on CGI but I was captivated most of the time, with the only exception being the fight for the third key. Thankfully, they jump between the OASIS and the real world a lot so I didn’t get CG fatigue and this back and forth kept the pace slick and excitement high.

The cast are diverse and awesome, with standouts being Cooke and Mendelsohn, the script has plenty of gems and laugh out loud moments and it is just an entertaining ride. Highly recommend.

In cinemas now 

Trackbacks

  1. […] different, while Cooke’s part was worlds away from the characters she’s played in Ready Player One and The Limehouse Golem. Yelchin is always excellent and it’s bittersweet to see him […]

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