I recently had the opportunity to see a preshow viewing of the Wachowski’s Jupiter Ascending. To say that this movie had potential would be an understatement. It had the actors, the beautiful sets and computer renderings, and amazing worlds that I am itching to explore. It LACKED a great script and pacing that allowed viewers to really enjoy the story.
As I am watching the movie, I can’t stop thinking about how this would make a better YA trilogy than a movie. In fact, this movie is the movie that should have been made AFTER a YA book was first published. Jupiter Ascending should have been three books. I will vaguely outline my thoughts below so as not to fully spoil the movie. I do recommend it as a Netflix option.
We are introduced to Jupiter, a Russian immigrant, who works as a house cleaner, but dreams of more. One day, she is attacked by aliens (think cross between the Worms from MIB: Men in Black and the Silence from Doctor Who). A hunky man named Caine, with awesome space boots, saves her and reveals that Earth is not the only plant with sentient creatures. We, as readers, get the back-story of the human race, why Jupiter is special, and exactly why aliens were sent to kill her. A bit of space travel later, and some crumbs of back-story for Caine, Jupiter ascends to her space heritage, and learns the secret of time as a commodity.
Of course there are some fights and building romantic pairings (it wouldn’t be YA without it).
Jupiter now controls her space heritage and must contend with adversaries intent on taking that from her. Her growing attraction to Caine is stymied by Caine’s personal drama.
After thwarting a plan to steal her heritage, Jupiter returns to earth to discover her family has been kidnapped by The Big Bad in a ploy to steal her heritage to make the commodity of time. Jupiter and Caine finally realize their feelings.
As you can see much better as a book series. There is more time to explore areas that were glossed over by the pacing of the movie and allow for world building.
Transmedia is the future, people. And Jupiter Ascending would benefit from that treatment.