It’s all ‘s fault. Not only did she lend us the DVD’s of Firefly in the first place, but she also babysat for us on Sunday while we went to the cinema for the first time since August to see Serenity. And she is by her own admission a dangerous person.

If you want a spoiler free review, you should read andrewducker, eugie, kate_nepveu, coalescent, lostcarpark, communicator, mylescorcoran, secritcrush or deadspeaker. [Edited to add: or del_c.]

If you want a review with spoilers, look at kate_nepveu (again), who doesn’t like some of the inconsistencies; coalescent (again) who comments on one particular plot twist; marykaykare, who comments on and deeply disliked the other similar plot twist; communicator (again) who likes the final space battle (I don’t think it’s a spoiler to reveal that there is a final space battle); bohemiancoast, who thinks it’s too derivative, and not just of the TV series; theferrett, who takes it as it comes; communicator (again again) pondering its middle-class roots; kharin, who was pleasantly surprised; stellanova, who loved it but has some grounds for agreement with marykaykareannafdd, who just didn’t like it at all.

If you want a collection of other people’s reviews, look at coalescent (again again) or shsilver. Or indeed right here.

Myself, I really liked it. But I don’t think you would enjoy it if you haven’t seen and enjoyed the TV series. A couple of the regular TV series characters are brought into the film just for the sake of having them there. The film provide a certain closure for a couple of plot points from the series, including a relatively trivial one that I think was flagged up by in a post I can’t find right now, the desperately important question as to whether the planets of the Firefly/Serenity universe are all in the same solar system or not.

Great Things about the film:

  • River as Super-Buffy. Fantastic. That scene where she is silhouetted against the opening door, reminiscent of several Buffy moments especially that bit with the scythe at the start of Series 3, but better.

  • Big Space Battles!!! With lots of space ships!!! Superb!!!!!

  • Where the Reavers really came from.

  • Simon/Kaylee – at last!!!

  • Oh yeah, as points out, the planets actually are all in the same system.

  • Great dialogue like:
    • Kaylee: Goin’ on a year now I ain’t had nothin’ twixt my nethers weren’t run on batteries!
      Mal: Oh, God! I can’t know that!
      Jayne: I could stand to hear a little more..

    • Simon: In all that time on the ship… I’ve always regretted… not being with you.
      Kaylee: With me? You mean to say… as in sex?
      Simon: I mean to say.
      Kaylee: To hell with this. I’m gonna live!

    • Simon: A phrase that’s encoded in her brain, that makes her fall asleep. If I speak the words, “Eta…
      Jayne: Well don’t say it!
      Zoe: It only works on her, Jayne.
      Jayne: Oh… Well, now I know that.

    • Mal: Just get us on the ground!
      Wash: That part’ll happen pretty definitely.

    • Mal: [about protective goggles] Fine, I’ll wear ’em. But I’ll look like an idiot.
      Zoe: I should think you’d be used to that, sir.

    • Mal: Do you want to run this ship?
      Jayne: Yes!
      Mal: [caught off guard] Well… you can’t…

    • Mal: The leg is good, It’ll bleed plenty and we avoid any necessary organs.
      Guard: I was thinking more of a graze…
      Mal: Well, you don’t want it to look like you just gave up.
      Guard: No, I get that…

    • Zoe: Do you really think any of us is gonna get through this?
      [looks at the other crew members struggling with their guns]
      Jayne: Well, I might.

    • Wash: Can we start with the part where Jayne gets beat up by a 90 pound girl? Because that’s never getting old.

    • Jayne: Ain’t logical. Cuttin’ on his own face, rapin’ and murdering – Hell, I’ll kill a man in a fair fight… or if I think he’s gonna start a fair fight, or if he bothers me, or if there’s a woman, or if I’m gettin’ paid – mostly only when I’m gettin’ paid. But these Reavers… last ten years they show up like the bogeyman from stories. Eating people alive? Where’s that get fun?

    • Mal: But it ain’t all buttons and charts, little albatross. You know what the first rule of flyin’ is? Well I suppose you do, since you already know what I’m about to say.
      River: I do. But I like to hear you say it.
      Mal: Love. You can know all the math in the ‘Verse, but take a boat in the air you don’t love, she’ll shake you off just as sure as the turning of worlds. Love keeps her in the air when she oughta fall down, tells ya she’s hurtin’ ‘fore she keens. Makes her home.
      [reminds me very much of “L’amor che muove il sole e l’altre stelle“, and I’m sure that is not accidental.]
Things I was less impressed by:
  • Bringing in Book just to kill him off.

  • Bringing in Inara without progressing the relationship between her and Mal.

  • Poor old Wash. I’m more on the stellanova side than the marykaykare side of the argument, but still it was a brutal shock (and of course left us wondeing who else would be killed – as it turned out, nobody).

  • The Operative’s means and ability to marshal resources: yet another über-villain who somehow can kill everyone except (most of) our heroes.
But seen in the context of the series as a whole these are minor points. We loved it.

(NB through the magic of HTML all the above links should take you to the relevant entry of each person’s journal.)

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