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Running Time:
1 hour, 32 minutes

Rating: PG-13 Parents Strongly Cautioned.

Rating Explanation:
for some sci-fi disaster images and violence.

Jimmy's Buzz Guide Review:
This remake doesn't disgrace the original, and it's sufficiently different and just as relevant, with some fine performances as well.

Additional Info:
3 Disc DVD Features:
Closed Caption; Disc 1: Commentary by screenwriter David Scarpa; Deleted scenes; Re-imagining the Day documentary; Unleashing Gort featurette; Watching the Skies: In Search of Extraterrestrial Life featurette; The Day the Earth Was "Green" featurette; Still galleries (concept art, storyboards, production photos);
Disc 2: Digital copy of The Day the Earth Stood Still for portable media players;
Disc 3:; Original 1951 movie on DVD.

Keanu Reeves ... Klaatu
Jennifer Connelly ... Helen Benson
Kathy Bates ... Regina Jackson
Jaden Smith ... Jacob Benson
John Cleese ... Prof. Barnhardt
Jon Hamm ... Michael Granier
Kyle Chandler ... John Driscoll

The Day the Earth Stood Still
A huge spherical object lands in New York's Central Park, and a first response team led by members of the military and scientific community set out to check it out. Dr. Helen Benson (Jennifer Connelly "A Beautiful Mind") makes contact with a strange being getting out of the orb, but it's accidentally shot by a soldier, demandng immediate medical attention. Eventually, the humanoid-looking alien named Klaatu (Keanu Reeves "The Matrix") explains his purpose. Mankind's lack of environmental concern and overall violent nature has led other civilized planets to mandate the destruction of the entire population. While the Secretary of Defense (Kathy Bates "Mercy") plans an armed solution, Helen helps Klaatu escape, and along with her stepson Jacob (Jaden Smith "The Pursuit of Happyness"), she tries to convince the extraterrestrial being that humanity is worth saving.

If you can forget the 1951 sci-fi classic, on which it's based, this version directed by Scott Derrickson ("The Exorcism of Emily Rose")  is actually a very entertaining film with an important message. And the leading role is perfectly suited to Keannu Reeves' type of detached performance. This is a movie about ideas, debates, and the really tough questions of a 21st century civilization and its success as entertainment overrides any of its Buck Rogers cheesiness. 

The cast is uniformly fine, including John Cleese and James Hong in cameos roles. There will be some who still crave more action and adventure, so if you're devoted to the original, nothing will make up for your contempt for this version. But if you're willing to see it with an open mind, you'll find this remake does not disgrace the original, and it's sufficiently different to stand alone and just as relevant in its concerns about nuclear war.
The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008) with Keanu Reeves: DVD Cover


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