Release Date: 30 September 2005 (USA)
Cast: Nathan Fillion, Alan Tudyk, Gina Torres, Chiwetel Ejiofor
Running Time: 1hr 59min
It’s the 26th Century, and following the overpopulation of Earth, humanity has colonized a new solar system. The Alliance rules supreme, having won a war against the Independents. The Alliance are nefarious, and, among their many dealings, they try to condition River Tam as a psychic assassin. She is rescued by her brother Simon, and the two wind up aboard the spaceship Serenity, headed up by Captain Mal Reynolds.
The crew are smugglers who will take any job if the price is right, and the Tam siblings find a place on board. However, due to River inadvertently reading the minds of key Alliance personnel, an assassin known as The Operative is dispatched to take her out. After visiting a bar on a nearby planet, River is triggered subliminally by a TV commercial and attacked many of the people there. Just before being subdued she whispers ‘Miranda.’
The crew discovers that Miranda is a planet in a desolate region of space crawling with monsters known as Reavers. After evading The Operative and rescuing another former crew member, the crew of Serenity disguise their ship and land on Miranda. Here they discover a testing facility where the Alliance inadvertently created Reavers
Serenity is the directorial feature film debut of legendary writer-director Joss Whedon, a man this writer considers to be on a par with God himself. Those of you familiar with Whedon’s work may know that Serenity is a spin-off movie from the hugely successful (and awesome) but short-lived TV series Firefly.
Serenity was meant to make up what would have been season 2 of Firefly, and that’s likely why it leaves us satisfied, but hungry for more at the same time. If there is one thing Joss Whedon knows how to do well, it’s ensembles. With his witty dialogue and wonderful character arcs, Whedon paints his canvas in style, giving us a sci-fi movie we’ve spent years longing for.
Those who have seen Firefly will fall in love with these characters all over again, and those who haven’t will find the curious corners of their mind prodded and probed. Full of wit, tragedy, and political satire, make no mistake, Serenity remains one of the finest science-fiction movies of all time.