An excerpt from Reals’ script review for Chaos Walking which will be available 03/08/21:
What Is It Even About?
Good question, dear reader!
From Chaos Walking’s IMDB Homepage: A dystopian world where there are no women and all living creatures can hear each other’s thoughts in a stream of images, words, and sounds called Noise.
Well, that’s vague as hell.
Here’s another one, from the Plot Summary Section of IMDB: In the not-too-distant future, Todd Hewitt (Tom Holland) discovers Viola (Daisy Ridley), a mysterious girl who crash lands on his planet, where all the women have disappeared and the men are afflicted by “the Noise” – a force that puts all their thoughts on display.
So, from that description, I got a very Book Of Eli meets After Earth vibe from this project. Tom Holland has to escort Daisy Ridley through a dangerous dystopia, and runs into a crazy mayor of a crazy town who wants to kidnap Daisy Ridley and use her powers / abilities to help him rule.
Sure, we’ve seen this before (and probably done better) but, like we talked about in my review of the script for the Blumhouse film, Freaky, “Give Me The Same, But Different” sells.
Chaos Walking is also, apparently, based on a trilogy of YA books from Patrick Ness, which I’m sure didn’t hurt when the studio was deciding whether or not to dump $125 million into this.
(NOTE: According to IMDB, the film credits both Patrick Ness and Christopher Ford as the screenwriters. The draft we have available is an early draft by Charlie Kaufman, so there may be significant changes between this script and the final film)
— Aaron’s Thoughts – On Pg. 10, I liked when Aaron punches Todd and then has violent, chaotic images swirling around his head – it’s an interesting visual showing the madness that is racing through Aaron’s mind.
That said, I am not totally sure how some of the images (the naked women in particular) were supposed to work for a PG-13 adaptation of a Young Adult book series.
— The Silent Girl – I liked that The Girl (As she is referred to in the script, though she eventually speaks and is named Viola) is silent throughout her entire introduction.
However, I do feel like the writer should have doubled-down on this silence and kept her as a totally mute character throughout the script, as that would present some interesting challenges for Todd and would have made for a much more unique story.
To be fair, it is true that her thoughts can’t be heard, which provides some sense of that isolation and leads to conflict between her and Todd, which is good.
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