Before watching Steven Spielberg’s latest film Ready Player One, I had some concerns. For starters, while you can’t judge a book by its cover, I really wasn’t into the trailer. It just didn’t grab me. Also, I knew the film would be jammed with pop culture references, but I worried that they would be used to pointlessly jab the viewer for nothing more than nostalgia or self promoting purposes. Luckily, while the nostalgia is definitely there, these pop culture references are used to create a fun and compelling story. (no spoilers, but general premise ahead)
It’s 2045 and the real world basically sucks. Everyone is barely getting by and living in filth. As a diversion from this shitty reality, people turn to a massive virtual reality world called the OASIS. You can be whomever, and do whatever you want in this world. When creator James Halliday dies, he leaves his fortune and shares of the company to whomever can find a digital Easter egg hidden somewhere in the Oasis. From common folk, to rival companies, everyone is trying to piece together the clues to find it.
This film is a pop culture buffet. I could watch this film several times and probably still miss several characters and movie references that exist throughout this world. Since this is a Warner Bros. film, obtaining the rights to use characters owned by this studio is no big deal. However, obtaining the rights to use characters owned by some of the other studios (Disney, Fox, Paramount, Universal) is more problematic. The end result is very impressive, & I’m sure costed quite a bit. However, let me be clear. While someone like myself loves to nerd out to movie references and throwbacks, that alone won’t make a good movie. This is just the icing on the cake.
Without saying much, the main story is a fun ride that evolves into much more than a treasure hunt. It also manages to successfully convey a simple message that we all might need remind ourselves from time to time.
Ready Player One is a fun and entertaining ride, and simply one of the best Spielberg films in years. I highly recommend checking it out. If you are into pop culture & movie references, it only makes it better. I feel like I need to score this two separate ways. See below.
Score: 9/10 – If you’re a film buff
Score: 8/10 – If you’re the occasional movie watcher who wouldn’t understand a lot of references.
+ Fun story
+ awesome final battle scene
+ long movie, but not drawn out where you feel like they should have edited down the run time.
– I’m knit picking, but Wade kinda gets over the Aunt Alice thing a little to quick. haha (you’ll understand once you see the film)
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