There's an action sequence early in this movie, where I believe I literally had my jaw drop, thinking "wow, this is the most amazing thing ever." Not spoiling that sequence, but it was just visually so incredible to watch, that I had the urge to give the movie a standing ovation for what I just saw. As far as action sequences go though, that was the high point for the whole thing. I'm kidding. There are other high points in the movie as well, but as far as action sequences go though...
I found a lot about this movie to be very enjoyable. The whole idea about "the Oasis" is still a dream for many gamers today, but we get a fantastic visual to what it might look like here. The general adventure story for this quest in a virtual world; and the sequences that goes along with that, is like a very fun premise made just for me. Then there's all the pop culture references, which lie somewhere between embarrassing audience pandering, and a nostalgia trip that's hitting all the correct buttons to make me very happy.
As I unfortunately already hinted at, this movie has several flaws. The plot at times just becomes nonsense and illogical, seemingly just to move the story in the direction it needs to go. I've had to suspend my disbelief multiple times, while shaking my head, wondering why the hell is this happening on screen? Oh, and convenient coincidences occur quite often, plus the familiar plot tropes, all just to allow the story to keep moving. Some cases it's for moments of levity, which is appreciated. The world building is also kinda wonky, or brilliant, depending on the situation.
The cast is great in this at least, seemingly aware that they are suppose to have some fun with their roles, and not to take it too seriously. Kudos to the good work by Ben Mendelsohn, Olivia Cooke, Lena Waithe, TJ Miller, and Simon Pegg, for the roles they played here. Tye Sheridan may be the lead of the movie, but he's honestly just playing the role of the archetype hero that simply acts as the audience surrogate. Not his fault? At least Mark Rylance gets to once again show us why he is one of the best actors in movies today, and is definitely one of the main highlights to watch in this.
Look past all the negatives I mentioned, focus on the positives, and you've got a movie with a lot of heart, good thematic messages (some bad ones too), an energetic story that keeps your attention throughout, and an awesome tribute to gaming and pop culture. For movies like this, all I ask is that it reminds me of what it's like being a young boy who loves to play video games, and "Ready Player One" succeeds at that. The spirit of gaming, being a gamer, playing games with friends, is what it's really all about, and this movie doesn't fail me there.
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