Thursday, 24 February 2011

Dead Like Me: Life After Death

The Forward

After a stunning television run (I watched every episode of the television series, Dead Like Me) it seemed like a natural step to follow it up with the movie.

The Story

The movie takes place a mere five years after the television series, and therefore, if you haven't seen the series, you may not take much away from this review.
If you think everything has changed in five years, you just hit the nail on the head, Peanut. Georgia "George" Lass has returned! So has Mason, the screw-up, and Roxy the "She-Could-Kick-Your-Ass" cop. George's mom and sister are back, too, and that's about where the similarities end.

Five years can change a lot.

Seems Rube, the cool boss-man from the television series is gone, without even a cameo appearance in the movie. Daisy, the slut, is played by a starkly different actor, as is Un-George (the What-George-Looks-Like-to-the-Living, if you follow me).

Anyway, the deal is, George, Mason, Daisy and Roxy are getting a new boss, and this new boss is a total jerk. He intentionally misleads them about times for reaps and whatnot, because he just doesn't care. This causes all of the reapers (except our heroine, George, of course) to go a little crazy. They begin indulging in selfish acts, and not caring what happens, 'cause, well, they're already dead. What's the worst that could happen?

The Review

Mason is friggin' hilarious. Other than that, the movie is a never-ending "meh"-fest. We're re-introduced to every single thing that happened during the TV series, despite the fact that no one would watch the movie unless they had watched the TV series. Reaps don't happen often, and those that do are boring and entirely non-creative. It seems like someone who had watched a few episodes of the TV show decided to throw together a movie plot, to cash in on the darkly-hilarious original.
During the TV series, George always had this "I don't give a rat's ass about all this stuff going on around me" attitude, but during the course of the movie, I realized that this attitude had been given toward the movie's plot itself. All of the actors (though most notably, the one that plays George) seem to be half-assing their acting job, and doing it 'cause it's an easy paycheck.
Right toward the end of the movie, a few new pseudo-plot-lines are opened (Post-Its from the sky!?) but they're left to dangle. Realistically, I'm not sure I even care where these plot-ropes lead anymore.

The Summary

Overall, Dead Like Me: Life After Death is one Helluva mixed bag of nuts. It stays true to the Dead Like Me conventions in some senses, while just tossing out other aspects as it suits the plot of the movie. If another Dead Like Me film is on the horizon, they're going to have to put a lot more depth into it, in order to keep audiences entertained.

The Good+Mason, Mason, Mason
+Story is decent enough, but seems a little... flat
+The ending was pretty good, particularly George's last line
+Acting picks up a bit, about half-way through
The Bad-Missing characters and actors that I miss!
-Confusing, nonsensical pieces of story that are only half-explained
-Dull acting (including voiceovers) make you wonder if you should just turn the movie off

Rating: 6/10

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