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Journey to the Center of the Earth

A hollow adaptation
By PETER KEOUGH  |  July 9, 2008
1.5 1.5 Stars

The biggest thrill the 3-D process delivers in Eric Brevig’s hollow adaptation of Jules Verne’s sci-fi classic is a yo-yo. Exciting, but not enough to dim memories of the 1959 version with James Mason. Post-modernists, though, might ponder the film’s reflexivity — protagonist Trevor Anderson (Brendan Fraser) is a “Vernean,” a scientist who believes the writer’s fantasies are based on fact. So Trevor follows the text in a dog-eared copy of the novel as he and his nephew Sean (Josh Hutcherson) and their Icelandic guide Hannah (Anita Briem) descend through the womb-like caves to find a world that can attain the grandeur of a Gustav Doré engraving when it’s not shamelessly copying Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. But what they’re really searching for is Family — Trevor is looking for his brother, Sean for a surrogate dad. Hannah seems the only one not taken in by this bunk; Briem’s performance is the film’s real discovery. 92 minutes | Boston Common + Fenway + Fresh Pond + Circle/Chestnut Hill + Suburbs

  Topics: Reviews , Jules Verne , Entertainment , Movies ,  More more >
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