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Indyfreak's Movie Reviews (857)

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Ready Player One 
Ready Player One is set and good to go!
3/4 stars

Steven Spielberg pays homage to a genre he helped to create in this rollicking and visually dazzling blockbuster adventure.
In the near future, a disillusioned human populace retreats to an infinite virtual reality called the OASIS. Inside this digital world, people use their unique avatars to hunt for clues to a huge fortune left by the deceased inventor of OASIS. One of these players is Wade Watts aka Parsifal (Tye Sheridan) who teams up with a motley crew of gamers in a race against an unscrupulous industrialist (Ben Mendelsohn) for the prize of winning the game and beating OASIS.
The technical details are stunning. The mo-cap for the characters look very good. Tye Sheridan has the look of a distaff Miles Teller but he's a solid young leading man. While he does fine, he is a bit bland as the everyman protagonist. Meanwhile, the Olivia Cooke steals a lot of the spotlight as his charismatic love interest Artemis. Ben Mendelsohn is a lot of fun as the stereotypical stock 80s/90s villain. Strong supporting work is provided by T.J. Miller as a wisecracking bounty hunter; Lena Waithe as Wade's best friend; and the ever excellent Mark Rylance as James Halliday the reclusive genius who created OASIS in the first place.
This movie is far better than the trailers implied. It is a gigantic super-meta treasure trove of contemporary pop culture references. If it remained just a blockbuster sized version of a Family Guy cutaway gag, it'd be impressive that it was made at all. Luckily, the film gradually shifts into a more sincere story that pits embattled optimism against encroaching cynicism.
Optimism is synonymous with Steven Spielberg. And it is something missing from many a big budget Hollywood film these days.


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