STARRING: Milla Jovovich, Cameron
Bright, Nick Chinlund, William Fichtner, Sebastien Andrieu, Ida Martin, Ricardo
2006, 85 Minutes, Directed by: Kurt Wimmer
Milla Jovovich (Resident Evil, The Fifth Element), Cameron Bright (X-Men 3),
Nick Chinlund (The Legend of Zorro) and William Fichtner (The Longest Yard) star
in this theatrical set in the late 21st century, a subculture of humans have
emerged who have been modified genetically by a vampire-like disease (Hemophagia),
giving them enhanced speed, incredible stamina and acute intelligence, and as
they are set apart from "normal" and "healthy" humans, the world is pushed to
the brink of worldwide civil war (a war between humans and hemophages) aimed at
the destruction of the "diseased" population. In the middle of this crossed-fire
is - an infected woman - Ultraviolet, who finds herself protecting a
nine-year-old boy who has been marked for death by the human government as he is
believed to be a threat to humans.
few years back director Kurt Wimmer made Equilibrium,
an unoriginal sci-fi action movie featuring some unexpectedly enjoyable - albeit
implausible - Matrix-style action sequences. This year
Wimmer is back with Ultraviolet, an Aeon Flux-like
sci-fi movie he claims to have written specifically with lead actress Milla
Jovovich of Fifth Element and
Resident Evil fame in mind.
What Jovovich did to deserve
this particular movie isn’t exactly clear. The same goes for the poor audience.
This time we also have implausible and over-the-top action sequences, but the
movie is so overloaded with them that they become tiresome. Wimmer obviously
have never heard the expression “less is more”.
"The CGI effects are particularly cheap and obvious looking . . ."
When a heroine is as invincible
and indestructible as the one portrayed here and kills off hordes of faceless
henchmen without even so much as breaking a sweat, the action becomes simply
repetitive and pointless. In the hands of superior directors such as Quentin
Tarantino over-the-top scenes like these would be played tongue-in-cheek with
satiric purposes in mind. Wimmer instead plays them straight, obviously not
having gotten the joke in Kill Bill . . .
To make matters worse, the CGI
effects are particularly cheap and obvious looking. Scenes which are meant to be
photorealistic look instead like a bad PlayStation game. Come to think of it,
we’ve seen better graphics in the computer games we had back in the old 486
days. No wonder today’s youth prefers playing computer games to going to the
cinema: the graphics are better and games at least offer some interactivity!
All Ultraviolet offers
is an incomprehensible plot filled with the sort of meaningless technobabble
that gives science fiction a bad name and would make any
Star Trek writer blush. Also, the movie has no rhythm or tempo. Fuelled by
an incessantly thumping techno soundtrack designed to give you migraines
Ultraviolet is just one damned cheesy-looking action scene after the other
without so much as a hint of tension or emotional resonance. It was as if the
entire movie was created so that they could make a cool-looking trailer out of
But don’t be fooled:
Ultraviolet is such a stinker that you’d be wishing that you were rather
watching one of those Resident Evil movies
instead . . . (On the plus side, the primary
neon colour sets and costumes is a welcome change from the usual more gloomy
production designs we’ve seen in recent celluloid sci-fi.)