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  • Hamish Hart

Atlas (2024) Review

RATING: 3/10

ATLAS contains plenty of good ideas, but what Brad Peyton's sci-fi "epic" lacks is everything else. Beautiful cinematography, competent acting, an engaging story; all are missing from Netflix's latest misfire. Hopefully this is the wake-up call Netflix needs as I don't believe the company, or its subscribers, will be able to bear yet another blunder like this.

Loosely inspired by 2014 video game Titanfall, Atlas centres around unsociable data analyst Atlas Shepard (Jennifer Lopez) as she is assigned to join a mission to capture a renegade AI robot (Simu Liu) threatening to destroy humanity. But when plans go awry, Atlas is left with no choice but to trust her enemy in order to survive.

Director Brad Peyton just got too caught up in wanting to create his own sci-fi action video game that he forgot to include the movie elements. Atlas meanders from story beat to beat that it eventually loses all sign of the story it was supposed to be telling, resulting in a complicated mess that not even an AI could get itself out of. There are certainly moments where Jennifer Lopez wants to do her very best, but J-Lo's subpar acting abilities can only carry a subpar movie so far. Her character is one-dimensional, feeling more robotic than the AI she's fighting at the best of times. And the worst part of it is that this isn't even her fault: it comes down to the fault of the director and writers. The sci-fi genre opens up literally endless opportunities to explore the human psyche and their relationships with extra-terrestrial beings, but Atlas decides to keep the story grounded in current reality and have humans explore our relationship with AI robotics. Once again, a decent idea on paper, but the movie barely treats it like a movie and more like a video game, making the experience feel like all we're missing is a controller and headset.

At the end of the day, Atlas isn't something you're going to be rushing to your couch to check out anytime soon. While the movie may suck you in with its outer world atmosphere, it won't keep you around for much longer due to obnoxious CGI, boring action, and a script that feels like it was written by grade school AI.

Director Peyton borrows plenty of elements from 2014's Titanfall, but fails to capitalize on what made those video game stories engaging and exciting: the actual game. In what might be her best performance in recent times, Jennifer Lopez unfortunately dishes out one of her worst movies to date; a hit and miss for the international superstar.


About Me

Hamish newsheadshot_edited.jpg

Born in Longreach in Central West Queensland, I have undertaken a number of prominent roles across the region such as Journalist and Digital Media for The Longreach Leader, as well as appearing on critically-acclaimed radio stations ABC Western Queensland and 4LG and West FM to discuss all things film.

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