Sunday, November 27, 2016

The Void (2001)

Note:  This review was originally posted to my Epinions account.

I was looking around NetFlix one day and I came across The Void. I think I was looking for things with Amanda Tapping in it. (I happen to be a fan of the show, Stargate: SG-1, where she plays Lt. Col. Samantha Carter.) I noticed the movie also had Adrian Paul, of the Highlander TV series. I figured that it couldn’t hurt to rent something that they were both in. I may have to reconsider that assessment.

The movie is about Dr. Thomas Abernathy, played by Malcolm McDowell. He’s sort of the mad-scientist type. He wants to actually create a small black hole for the purposes of generating large amounts of clean energy. The trouble is that his math is bad. He’s tried once and failed, killing many people including Dr. Soderstrom. (Abernathy was watching from a remote site, and was thus spared a horrible death.)

Eight years later, Dr. Abernathy wants to try again. He thinks he has all of the problems worked out. Eva Soderstrom, played by Amanda Tapping, is trying to shut him down; she thinks that the math is still bad. (Eva is also the daughter of the Dr. Soderstrom that was killed in the accident eight years prior.)

She and Steven Price (played by Adrian Paul) are both professors at the same school. Price also has another job working for Abernathy. She uses him to access files and get proof of what’s going on. When confronted about it, Price doesn’t believe her and feels betrayed, but eventually comes around. The two of them realize that they have to save the world by stopping Abernathy.

The movie was hit and miss. It looks like the bulk of the money was spent on some good actors with the rest of the money going to special effects. I like Amanda Tapping, Adrian Paul and Malcolm McDowell. All three were great in this movie.

The special effects were only a little better than marginal. Most of it is pretty good, but there were some visual things that I picked up on that I felt took away from the movie. For instance, there’s a picture of Eva and her father that’s just of the two of them against a gray background. It looks like someone just edited two separate pictures together and put it in a frame.

The story was interesting, but could have used a little work. There were a few things that I saw coming. (Don’t worry; I won’t spoil it for you.) Also, why was Eva so certain of the Earth’s destruction? I find it odd that she saw only two possible outcomes, both of which were catastrophic. My biggest complaint was with the fact that several of the scenes looked like they were added in as an afterthought. This is most evident when Eva spends the night at Price’s place.

The movie was only 90 minutes. I felt that the movie could have done a little more, especially when it came to explaining the science that went into Abernathy’s project. Also, why is it that the heroes only have a few days to save the world? Couldn’t they at least be given a chance to work through official channels?

It’s a three-star movie. It’s entertaining, but only if you don’t ask too many questions. I’d recommend this movie on a night when there’s little else to watch. 

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