Chaos Walking the long awaited movies that was mired in production issues over the years, finally comes to the screen from Doug Linman, starring British acting superstars Tom Holland (the MCUs Spiderman) and Daisy Ridley (Rey in the latest Star Wars movies). The film is based on the book ‘The Knife Of Never Letting Go’ by American-British novelist Patrick Ness. The book series has won almost every major children’s fiction award in the UK, so a film with two rising stars and a budget to match should be a slam dunk right? Well, not quite.
In the not too distant future, Todd Hewitt (Tom Holland) discovers Viola (Daisy Ridley), a mysterious girl who crash lands on his planet, where all the women have disappeared and the men are afflicted by “the Noise” – a force that puts all their thoughts on display. In this dangerous landscape, Viola’s life is threatened – and as Todd vows to protect her, he will have to discover his own inner power and unlock the planet’s dark secrets.
The film itself looks great, has a superb cast, as well as Holland and Ridley, you have Mads Mikkelsen, Nick Jonas and David Oyelowo among others. It just should have worked, but it doesn’t really. ‘The noise’ is inconsistently used throughout the movie and the pacing and story are everywhere and in-between. As with a lot of dystopian sci-fi movies, there are lots of periods of not a lot going on and to be brutally honest at time Chaos Walking is just plain dull.
However, the cast allow Chaos Walking to punch above its weight somewhat, with David Oyelowo in particularly intense form, leaving you to witness the most downright distressing scene you will encounter on screen this year in what is a ‘teen movie’. The action scenes, when they happen are well brought together, ‘the noise’ could have been elaborated on more to flesh out just how the whole thing works, but the movies best moments really boil down to Mads Mikkelsen, roaming around on his horse bellowing at people and telling them to quieten the noise up.
Chaos Walking leaves us in the usual position of ‘it’s set up for a sequel’ but Chaos Walking while enjoyable in parts but ultimately is simply to vanilla in its style to leave you begging for more. Unfortunate as this had all the ingredients to be the next Hunger Games, but turned out more like Divergent.