DVD Review: The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008)
2008’s remake of the science-fiction classic The Day the Earth Stood Still was not, when all things were said and done, a box office failure, but Fox had to be disappointed with its lackluster opening weekend, lukewarm critical reception and quick fade from theaters.
The overall so-so response sums up the movie pretty well. The Day the Earth Stood Still is good, but not great. It’s entertaining, but not thrilling. It’s intriguing, but not exciting. In other words, it’s sort of like the original, only… not original.
The Keanu Reeves/Jennifer Connelly flick is now out on DVD, and with it a few forgettable special features. There are some blink-and-you’ll-miss-them deleted scenes and a commentary by writer Dave Scarpa. The worst feature on the disc is the standard behind-the-scenes documentary, which is promotional in nature and tries very hard to offer as little useful information as possible over a half-hour period.
The other featurettes aren’t nearly so bad, but still not memorable. There’s one that looks at the possibilities of real UFOs and alien life forms, though it’s nothing we haven’t heard before (most UFOs are military airplanes or something along those lines, given the size of the universe it only makes sense that there could be other life out there somewhere).
“The Day the Earth Turned Green” is more unique, as it looks at the green initiatives the film production undertook to save costs and give back to the environment. I like the idea here, but the actual information provided in the featurette could be summed up in thirty seconds.
Most interesting is a documentary that looks at the reimagining of the robot Gort, one of the most iconic sci-fi characters of the 20th century. It’s interesting to see just how many iterations Gort went through during pre-production before everyone decided that it was best to stick with something close to the original. There are some good factoids here – and thank God the other designs weren’t used.
Overall, The Day the Earth Stood Still has some OK features, but the collection is pretty standard and unremarkable. Just like the movie, they are forgettable.