Jeffro's Space Gaming Blog

Microgames, Monster Games, and Role Playing Games

Best “Car Wars” Movie of 2005

Without a doubt, “The Island” is the best Car Wars movie of 2005.  It’s got it all: futuristic 18-wheelers, jet-bikes, killer dropped-weapons, and clones….  Lots and lots of clones.

If you ever wondered how Gold Cross would really work, this movie shows us.  There are a couple of key differences between Car Wars continuity and the movie, but there’s no reason that the movie couldn’t describe how things really work in the Autoduel America’s 2040s.

The movie combines themes from Bladerunner and The Matrix, and hits hard on the ethical issues in a much more moving and effective way than movies like Alien: Resurection did.  The action is relentless and the suspense never lets up– this makes the movie emotionally exhausting the way that The Matrix:Reloaded’s endless chase scene was.  It probably would have been a better movie if it had given us a break to assimilate everything that had happened.

The sets and visuals are incredible.  There’s just so much space and scope to everything.  (We’ve come a long way from Star Trek’s matte paintings and styrofoam….)

I hadn’t heard a lot of good about this movie, so I wasn’t expecting much.  I didn’t think “Obiwan Kenobi” could pull off the leading man bit.  (The wart on his forehead is distracting and he’s nowhere near as cool as Sean Connery or Harrison Ford.)  But he did pull it off….  Ewan McGregor was a very believable actor and drew me into the character.  I guess now we won’t have to fault him too much for working with Lucas on the prequels….

It’s really not a bad movie, on the whole.  It’s little derivative, but “Matrix Runner: The Resurection” turns out to be entertaining anyway.  The first thirty minutes alone are worth the price of admission.  No other movie has illustrated so graphically the ethical difficulties that would result if the technology of cloning became possible.  John Nowak addressed some of it in his short stories for Autoduel Quarterly, but this movie goes even further than I imagined it could go.  That to me is the mark of great science fiction: when authors give us a glimpse of the future beyond what we already think we know.

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