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JulyDiaz

EPISODE 112 — Jupiter Ascending

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Some quick omissions:

 

There's a guy with an elephant face who's piloting that ships that's allied (?) with Mila Kunis and Channing Tatum's characters. The black female pilot lady addresses him as Nesh. The name of the human body with an elephant head....is Nesh. Like Ganesh. More like Hackowskis amirite.

 

Also, you guys didn't even mention Magic Mike's wings at the end! She was super hot for his wings which is weird enough, but it is NEVER explained how he got his wings back, what the emotional significance of them was to him or anyone else, or why a half-human, half-wolf would have wings.

 

We straight up never heard from the sister again. What happened to her? Are she and the not dead brother still harvesting their planets and just Earth gets a pass?

 

I kinda liked the robot that helped Mila Kunis through the space bureaucracy.

 

This movie was worse because it had not terrible aspects to it and that makes the terrible aspects less forgiveable.

 

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Really glad to hear Paul and Jason discuss that version of the Second Opinions theme, because to be honest I would not mind if that one were banished straight to hell.

 

Someone made an amazing little short one with June and sparkly 80s music a while back... does that still exist?

Agreed, burn the mashup theme straight to the ground. Listening to it makes me embarrassed that I listen to HDTGM.

 

Omission?

 

As soon as this movie started with the Russian love story, and having some inkling that the movie was about a "space princess," I immediately thought of the story of Anastasia. I was completely convinced that this was going to be an intergalactic rip-off of the story, but the movie deviates from that. I feel it's still a worthy mention, even though "Jupiter Ascending" would be ripping off the Disney version rather than the true story.

 

What pointed it out to me:

- Russian

- Rags to Riches

- Lost Royalty

 

 

Any thoughts?

I actually like that interpretation of it. The only thing I would point out is that the animated Anastasia film was a Don Bluth affair, not Disney.

 

And of course my biggest bugbear with the podcast is kind of just addressing my favourite line in the whole damn movie:

mtjCU3t.gif

 

Jason and Paul complained that after Caine walks away, she repeats "I love dogs" like a space cadet as if she's convincing herself. I saw it more as reinforcing the "just your average girl" characterisation of JJ, by trying to give her that Bridget-Jones-esque adorkableness. I say "trying", more to acknowledge that some probably consider it ham fisted wheras I personally loved it.

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Also, Paul, June is WAY out of your league. I hope you count your blessings.

 

dude, not cool. June might find out.

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Jason and Paul complained that after Caine walks away, she repeats "I love dogs" like a space cadet as if she's convincing herself. I saw it more as reinforcing the "just your average girl" characterisation of JJ, by trying to give her that Bridget-Jones-esque adorkableness. I say "trying", more to acknowledge that some probably consider it ham fisted wheras I personally loved it.

I saw it as her saying to herself, "'I love dogs?' What was I thinking? Stupid!"

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Legal Omission!

 

1. Jupiter gains title to the Earth and owns it. But somehow Balem can steal her family with impunity? If your mom deeded her house to you, your brother can't go in and start ripping out the copper pipes. Where are the space police? Why won't they intercede?

 

2. What kind of crazy laws do they have that title can change if someone shows up in the future? Again, your mom dies. [sorry mom]. Her will says, "I leave everything to Balem... unless my clone shows up someday." How could this ever work? Either Balem holds it in Trust for the future self, in which case he NEVER really owned the Earth. Or their legal system makes no sense and you can lose your property if the genetic lottery produces a reoccurrence.

 

3.) Why does Balem get anything at all? If you murder someone in the US, you lose the right to benefit from their estate.

 

Regular Omission:

I hated how they kept talking to Jupiter like she was a reincarnation of the Mom. It was just a genetic match with mom, it doesn't mean Jupiter remembers Balem killing a completely different person.

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This movie is a hot mess. I dont understand why there needs to be 3 siblings at all. There should be Eddie & the sister. No second brother & have Mila Kunis marry the sister after she explains how the bath works. If the marriage to the second brother was just politics and not based on love, then cut that brother out & give that plot line to the sister... so she can actually have a role in this movie.

 

Also, the absorption side of a Maxi pad is not the sticky side. I dont know what the hell they were doing.

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Also, she went from teaching applied mathematics to a maid?

Right? While it is true that immigrants often get downgrade professionally--sometimes to a drastic degree--in their new country, it is usually due to immigration status and language barrier.

 

Aleksa is fluent in English; she was a math professor in Russia, a country with a world-beating mathematics education. She could've easily tutored students for $50 - $200 an hour, in cash, so she wouldn't have to worry about a work permit.

 

Seems a bit unnecessarily insensitive in a film full of every imaginable alien / humanoid creature in the universe to have him fly in a thrown with a black slave attached to the front like a trophy. No?

That scene bothered me a lot.

 

I love Jason's line, "He has all the bees." And the discussion of the the aliens shopping for clothes made me laughed.

 

The most on-the-nose name belongs to the rat splice overseer of Balem's refinery, Chicanery Night.

 

My favorite line in the movie is the one uttered by Jupiter when she and Caine were in the car going to Stinger's House of Bees and she had just been told by Caine that Titus had hired him to look for Jupiter, "I have never even met this Titus, what's his name?" You just said his name.

 

My next favorite line is when Jupiter and Caine are on board the Aegis' spaceship and Caine handed her some vials and said, "Portaling can be a little rough on the royal bowels."

 

Jupiter might be quite kinky. She got incredibly turned on when Caine addressed her as your majesty, she likes to be bitten, and there was that hint of bestiality ("I love dogs."). If it weren't for their complete lack of chemistry, Jupiter and Caine would've made a good pair. They could have S/M sessions where Caine taps into the obedience of a canine for his role as a sub.

 

Speaking of sex, orgies seem to be a regular thing now in the Wachowskis' works and they are getting more and more comfortable with portraying orgies. In the second

, we have an orgy masquerading as a dance party. In JA, an orgy is unambiguosly happening but there is no nudity. The latest orgy scene is in an eppy of
. It's NSFW. And shockingly hot. Here's an idea. Now that Sam Taylor-Johnson has left the Fifty Shades of Grey franchise in a huff, the Wachowskis should step in.
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Legal Omission!

 

1. Jupiter gains title to the Earth and owns it. But somehow Balem can steal her family with impunity? If your mom deeded her house to you, your brother can't go in and start ripping out the copper pipes. Where are the space police? Why won't they intercede?

 

2. What kind of crazy laws do they have that title can change if someone shows up in the future? Again, your mom dies. [sorry mom]. Her will says, "I leave everything to Balem... unless my clone shows up someday." How could this ever work? Either Balem holds it in Trust for the future self, in which case he NEVER really owned the Earth. Or their legal system makes no sense and you can lose your property if the genetic lottery produces a reoccurrence.

 

3.) Why does Balem get anything at all? If you murder someone in the US, you lose the right to benefit from their estate.

 

Regular Omission:

I hated how they kept talking to Jupiter like she was a reincarnation of the Mom. It was just a genetic match with mom, it doesn't mean Jupiter remembers Balem killing a completely different person.

 

1. In the scene where Jupiter returns home with Caine, Stinger and the Aegis, they make it very clear that Balem's agent (Chicanery Night) is trespassing and shouldn't be there. Everyone present, including Mr Night, is clear on that point. The Aegis are the police ("space cops") and could potentially take action to detain Mr Night, but that wouldn't get Jupiter's family back or stop Balem killing them in revenge. The royals are tens of thousands of years old, and probably have more influence and power than the police do. That's why Jupiter goes with Mr Night - Balem is breaking the law but that's immaterial since he has something she wants (her family) and Jupiter isn't going to get it back by following the due legal process. She thus has to play the game according to his rules.

 

2. These people measure their lifetimes in millennia, so allowing your children to inherit in lieu of your 'reincarnation' isn't that bizarre - your children could do with your assets as they please, benefiting from them financially, over the millennia until you come back. It's also implied that mama Abrasax only left her recurrence Earth or a small number of planets to come from Balem's share of the inheritance, so it's not as if she's taken everything that was bequeathed to him.

 

3. Kalique tells Jupiter that they don't know who killed her mother. While she could well be lying, it's heavily implied that the murder was hushed up and the true circumstances kept secret. The only people who really know what went down are Balem and his mother, and one of those parties is intensely secretive and mentally disturbed while the other is dead. Therefore, that Balem murdered her is immaterial when it comes to his inheritance - no one knows, or at least if people do know/suspect something they're not going to take action on that knowledge for fear of repercussions.

 

As for everyone's insistence that Jupiter is their mother, that's absolutely deliberate and important. It's not meant to be good and we're meant to believe that that attitude is wrong - Jupiter repeatedly points out that it's wrong and makes it clear that she's uncomfortable with her treatment. Throughout the movie, everything that happens to Jupiter happens because she is perceived as another woman - she is addressed with that woman's title, afforded that woman's royal honours and called 'mother' by her former self's son. In every scene where Balem sees Jupiter - from the hologram scene onwards - some part of him is clearly convinced that he is looking at his mother. He has moments of lucidity but gradually becomes more and more unstable, which is why he addresses her as 'mother' with increasing frequency and becomes steadily more violent (slapping and strangling her) and unsettled. By his final scene he is utterly convinced that he is with his mother again (which is why he asks if she remembers her death), and is trying to kill her in an attempt to re-enact her murder and silence her as he silenced her before. This is a nightmarish, Gothic scenario, and it's what makes Jupiter's climatic line ("I'm not your damn mother") important - that line is her rejecting the identity that's been foisted upon her and asserting herself on her own terms.

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Corrections and omissions

 

Several times throughout the movie, Earth is mentioned as being "ripe for reaping". If the whole movie is based around Balem Abrasax wanting to kill Jupiter Jones why wouldn't he just harvest the whole planet (and turn everyone into purple dust?) while jupiter jones is still on it? Why hunt her down and risk losing everything when he can just kill everyone on the whole planet and add to his enormous wealth. This would eliminate any possibility of him losing his claim to his portion of his inheritance as well as eliminate the need to make this dumb movie.

 

You clearly can't reap a planet overnight - it's something that takes a lot of preparation and has to follow a pre-established process. Also, Earth is not quite ready for harvest - in a conversation at the refinery Balem is told that the ideal time for the harvest would be "later this century". Balem then says he would harvest Earth tomorrow before he'd let Jupiter have it, but that's most likely figurative - it's an expression of sentiment rather than an expression of real intent/feasibility. In light of all that, the best solution is to send assassins to kill Jupiter before either of his siblings can find her and exploit her to their own ends - which is exactly what Balem does.

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My favorite line in the movie is the one uttered by Jupiter when she and Caine were in the car going to Stinger's House of Bees and she had just been told by Caine that Titus had hired him to look for Jupiter, "I have never even met this Titus, what's his name?" You just said his name.

 

 

I think her issue was with the "Abrasax" part, not the "Titus" part.

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Shortly after her entrance I IMDb'ed the actress who played Kalique (Tuppence Middleton) and spent the rest of the movie feeling sorry for her--and not just for being in this bomb. Pretty, in her twenties, English, with the last name Middleton: How many millions of times has she been asked if she's related to those other Middletons? (She's not.)

 

Btw, if you're a hot English girl, you can get away with a silly first name like Tuppence or Suki.

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Shortly after her entrance I IMDb'ed the actress who played Kalique (Tuppence Middleton) and spent the rest of the movie feeling sorry for her--and not just for being in this bomb. Pretty, in her twenties, English, with the last name Middleton: How many millions of times has she been asked if she's related to those other Middletons? (She's not.)

 

Btw, if you're a hot English girl, you can get away with a silly first name like Tuppence or Suki.

 

Don't feel too sorry for her. She got one of the lead roles in Sense8 (the Wachowskis' Netflix series) because of Jupiter Ascending, and that series is doing very well and is likely to be renewed. JA and Sense8 are bringing her recognition she couldn't have dreamed of getting otherwise, and the Wachowskis clearly love working with her - she's very talented and versatile.

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She was also in the "White Bear" episode of Black Mirror, which is maybe the most bonkers episode of a completely bonkers series.

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I had recorded my own podcast review of this movie back when it came out, but I am very glad that the Crew's views largely overlapped with mine.

 

I am also VERY glad that Jason dislikes the second opinions theme as much as I do.

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I love Josh's inclusion on this. We were missing June in this and he June'd up pretty big. Also, I think Zooks calls him John after he said the movie had no plot holes.

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The name Abrasax is so close to the name of an HDTGM-worthy Terminator ripoff from the 90's called Abraxas: Guardian of the Galaxy. Coincidence??

 

post-98426-0-08182500-1434472482_thumb.jpg

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  • Stinger tells Jupiter: "Earth is just a planet, and people own things far more valuable." BUT THE WHOLE POINT OF THE MOVIE IS THAT EARTH IS SO GODDAMN VALUABLE

 

I think, and please correct me if I'm wrong, that he was alluding to the fact that it's humans that are the valuable part of Earth, not actually Earth itself.

 

Oh God I'm trying to explain things that happen in this movie like they make sense or something.

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I think, and please correct me if I'm wrong, that he was alluding to the fact that it's humans that are the valuable part of Earth, not actually Earth itself.

 

Oh God I'm trying to explain things that happen in this movie like they make sense or something.

 

The quote paraphrased by FisterRobot is actually from Kalique ("It's just a planet, Jupiter. In this world, people own things far more valuable"), and it's there to emphasise how detached the royals are from human concepts of value. As far as Kalique is concerned, Earth is quite trivial in the greater scheme of things - it is one planet among innumerable planets, and Balem and her presumably own hundreds if not thousands of planets between them. Earth is valuable, of course, but it's only one asset of many.

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1. Favorite moment: In the big climax scene when the whole planet is inexplicably exploding, Jupiter starts to climb a ladder, and my girlfriend blurts out "Jupiter is ascending!" Is that the moment the whole moving was building to?

 

2. Why does Jupiter only have the right to get earth back? Shouldn't she have the right to all her former possessions?

 

3. Are there no space police? Or like space FBI? Everyone is so advanced except in the law enforcement arena?

 

4. I think there was a weapon called Bee's wax? How can we not get more info on this?

 

5. At the beginning, Balem teleports to meet with his siblings. Why doesn't everyone just teleport everywhere? Why do you need ships?

 

6. The timing of the wedding sequence was nothing less than insane. I think Caine destroyed an entire fleet of enemies in the amount of time it took Jupiter to say her vows.

 

1. LOL, that was when of the few times when Jupiter was indisputably ascending. I think the title refers more to Jupiter ascending to a state of knowledge and enlightenment. The change she undergoes is mostly internal, a change in mindset.

 

2. Her former self only left her Earth, and Jupiter only gets what her former self said she was going to get.

 

3. The space police (the Aegis) escort Jupiter throughout much of the film - it's just that the royals keep on snatching Jupiter from under their noses. As I said elsewhere, the royals are ancient, well connected and powerful - they probably have more influence and more strings to pull than the Aegis, which is why they have the upper hand.

 

4. Stinger exclaims "beeswax!" but it's just a goofy curseword. It's equivalent to Leia calling Han a "nerfherder" in Star Wars.

 

5. That's like asking why people still cycle when we have cars. And I don't think it's teleportation - I think Balem's a hologram, going by the pixellating effect used when he appears and disappears.

 

6. They were burning through those things and were clearly conscious of the fact that time was of the essence. I doubt the siege took more than five minutes, which fits in with the time taken for the wedding ceremony/vows.

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Nonesuch, based on the level of detail with which you are able to respond to some of these questions, I'm starting to get the distinct vibe that you actually enjoyed this movie (perhaps, you may have even had a hand in writing it...) If so, I'd be very interested to know why you liked it so much. Granted, some of the questions you're answering do have clear in-movie answers, but some of your responses seem to be coming from the kind of intimate familiarity--with both the characters and story--that I can only imagine would have to come from a person who has devoted intense, philosophical thought to the themes and plot of this film. For me it was just a giant, goofy mess, but I'm open to a constructive argument in its favor.

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Has it been mentioned that this movie is a koo-koo bananas homage to Disney princesses? Think about it:

  • Average girl doesn't know she's royalty (Sleeping Beauty, Tangled)
  • She's friends with rich girl she works for (Princess & the Frog)
  • Works as cleaning lady (Cinderella)
  • Willing to marry bad guy for greater good (Beauty & the Beast)
  • Roguish love interest (also Tangled) who is literally part beast (also Beauty & the Beast)

Can't help but wonder if a singing snowman was part of the 600-page script...

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The name Abrasax is so close to the name of an HDTGM-worthy Terminator ripoff from the 90's called Abraxas: Guardian of the Galaxy. Coincidence??

 

post-98426-0-08182500-1434472482_thumb.jpg

Not to mention Rick Veitch's graphic novel "Abraxas and the Earthman"...

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Nonesuch, based on the level of detail you are able to respond to some of these questions, I'm starting to get the distinct vibe that you actually enjoyed this movie (perhaps, you may have even had a hand in writing it...) If so, I'd be very interested in why you liked it so much. Granted, some of the questions you're answering do have clear in-movie answers, but some of your responses seem to be coming from the kind of intimate familiarity--with both the characters and story--that I can only imagine have to come from a person who has devoted intense, philosophical thought to the themes and plot of this film. For me it was just a giant, goofy mess, but I'm open to a constructive argument in its favor.

 

While fully accepting that it's flawed, I love Jupiter Ascending (sincerely, not ironically) and will happily explain why. To begin, I saw the movie four times in cinemas. I was baffled by it after my first viewing and immediately wanted to see it again in order to understand what the hell I'd just watched; however, everything began to cohere with subsequent viewings and I found it increasingly admirable and fascinating. I love that a totally goofy film with space rollerblades and magical royalty-sensing bees also has serious commentary on capitalism, genetics and identity. I love that it’s entirely unashamed about what it is, revelling openly in its absurdity without once winking at the audience. I love that it plays out as the unabashed melodrama it is, taking your tried and trusted ‘lost princess’ story (the user who name-checked Anastasia earlier in the thread was dead right), firing it into your space and throwing in intense emotional and psychological baggage for the fun of it.

 

To be clear, I had absolutely no part in the production of the film – I certainly didn't write it (i.e. I am not Andy or Lana Wachowski), though I have got parts of the script (which means I understand certain elements of the backstory and character motives better). I have obviously thought about the film in depth and I can probably manage a reasonably logical answer to any question about the film you could throw at me. JA requires a lot of patience and creative engagement to enjoy fully, and while no film should ask that of viewers I've found going back to JA immensely very rewarding. I generally watch it with a big grin on my face.

 

Most importantly (to me, anyway), Jupiter Ascending is ridiculously ambitious - it's baroque, eccentric and all over the place, and these all are traits that endear it to me. It reminded me a lot of my favourite fantasy flicks, especially Labyrinth - it's glittery, over-the-top, memorably acted (whatever anyone says about Eddie Redmayne, they shouldn't be able to deny that he was memorable) and tonally inconsistent. It's also unashamedly a movie for girls and young women, which I (being female) appreciate. I actually found it a real shame that all of the commentators on the podcast were guys, since a film like JA is really begging for a female perspective. Having said that, I did appreciate the defence of the film at the end - while brief it's nice that the dissenting opinion was aired.

 

Perhaps the best way to put it is this: JA is the butchered theatrical version of an epic 1980s space opera anime that never existed, so it's a sprawling twelve-hour story compressed into a two-hour straitjacket. It's bursting at the seams and while I absolutely understand why it failed to connect with the majority it totally worked for me. I love it to pieces, flaws and all, and wish more films would shoot for the stars like JA did.

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Has it been mentioned that this movie is a koo-koo bananas homage to Disney princesses? Think about it:

  • Average girl doesn't know she's royalty (Sleeping Beauty, Tangled)
  • She's friends with rich girl she works for (Princess & the Frog)
  • Works as cleaning lady (Cinderella)
  • Willing to marry bad guy for greater good (Beauty & the Beast)
  • Roguish love interest (also Tangled) who is literally part beast (also Beauty & the Beast)

Can't help but wonder if a singing snowman was part of the 600-page script...

 

When a friend of mine described it as "American learns she is royalty and has to deal with other people trying to get her out of the throne" or something like, my mind thought "King Ralph in space."

tumblr_mkn4krNnV61rr202wo1_1280.jpg

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The name Abrasax is so close to the name of an HDTGM-worthy Terminator ripoff from the 90's called Abraxas: Guardian of the Galaxy. Coincidence??

 

post-98426-0-08182500-1434472482_thumb.jpg

Not to mention Rick Veitch's graphic novel "Abraxas and the Earthman"...

 

Abrasax/Abraxas are terms associated with Gnosticism. Jupiter Ascending can be read as a Gnostic parable (I won't go into how here since it would take too long, but it can), which is hardly surprising since the Wachowskis are big on Gnosticism (most famously incorporating Gnostic concepts into The Matrix). I'm not familiar with the film/graphic novel you mention, but imagine they also took the term from Gnosticism - so it's most likely a case of their all sharing a common source of inspiration.

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