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While M. Night Shyamalan has squandered the good will he built with his first few films, Signs is still one of the most fascinating alien invasion efforts made in the last 10 years. On the other hand Night’s last film, The Last Airbender, was named one of the worst movies of 2010. But despite is reputation of delivering beautiful films with very little and almost laughable substance; Shyamalan has still managed to gain excitement for his new film After Earth.
After Earth will feature Will Smith, his son Jayden and will mark as Shyamalan’s return to the science fiction genre. Sony will be bringing the sci-fi film to Comic-Con this year, along with a panel featuring the screenwriter Gary Whitta (Book of Eli) and cinematographer Peter Suschitzky (The Empire Strikes Back) to talk about the film with fans. Sony has also released the official synopsis of After Earth in anticipation of the Comic-Con panel on July 14th. Here it is…
In After Earth, one thousand years after cataclysmic events forced humanity’s escape from Earth, Nova Prime has become mankind’s new home. Legendary General Cypher Raige (played by Will Smith) returns from an extended tour of duty to his estranged family, ready to be a father to his 13-year-old son, Kitai (played by Jaden Smith). When an asteroid storm damages Cypher and Kitai’s craft, they crash-land on a now unfamiliar and dangerous Earth. As his father lies dying in the cockpit, Kitai must trek across the hostile terrain to recover their rescue beacon. His whole life, Kitai has wanted nothing more than to be a soldier like his father. Today, he gets his chance.
This sounds like a would-be return to form for Shyamalan. Many of his better films are stories involving smaller families making them more intimate in scope in comparison to the outer worlds around them. Maybe we shouldn’t get our hopes up, but when you combine this synopsis with the list of quality people involved, it seems like After Earth could be a good idea.