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It was one of those movies that I wasn't so sure about going into it. I've got this funny sort of skepticism that happens when it comes to movies; usually when everyone else starts getting excited about one, I immediately get turned off. Maybe it's just my attempt at being different or something. But I figured, this one seems to actually be getting good reviews, so what the hell.

I must say, I'm pretty impressed. Good story, stunning visuals, and cg acting that would give Gollum a run for his precious. I can see now why this movie is the most expensive ever made (there is no shot in the film longer than 2 seconds that is not armed to the teeth with computer generated effects). But the nice thing is, this movie isn't about the effects. You see sooooo many films out there that put their effects on display like some sort of tech show, and in the process completely forget what they're supposed to be doing. TELLING A STORY.

Well this movie definitely tells a story. And maybe it's just me and my nostalgia for classic adventure movies of the 70s, 80s, and 90s, but I think it's a pretty damn good story. Admittedly, if you absolutely hate plot predictability, then this movie isn't for you. Seriously, anyone who's seen more than one film by George Lucas, Stephen Spielberg, or James Cameron will catch on to almost everything. But this isn't some sort of mystery thriller surprise-ending flick. Its a movie that wants you to care most about its characters and, in the process, hopefully think a little bit about yourself.

My only real complaint was surprisingly with the sound. I don't know if it's the musician in me or what, but I always pay very close attention to sound in movies. Sadly, most of the creature sound effects were pulled straight out of the Skywalker Sound library with little to no editing. We're talking flying creatures that caw just like velociraptors and hammerhead rhinos with the roar of a T-Rex. Pretty disappointed in the lack of creativity there. And the music left something to be desired - mostly memorable themes, not to mention its tacky pop-song credit roll.

Anyway, I'm gonna shut up now before I have to start dividing this into chapters. If you like good adventure movies with plots that make you evaluate yourself (and your culture), definitely go see this movie. Hopefully I haven't ruined it for anyone here.

P.S. - I did not see the film in 3D, so I have no idea what kind of effect that has on the experience. But I will say that I'm glad that it didn't seem to have any need to use the 3D experience as a crutch, as so many of the 3D movies that I've seen do.