A building that acts as a portal to alternative Earths? So far so good. That's the kind of movie for me. Unfortunately, the first Earth that the trio (plus Wu) get to visit is a sort of cliché B-movie version of "Mad Max 2" -' and that's definitely one of my more peevy cinematic pet-peeves. Sure, the location looks kinda nifty, but the characters and the plot revolving around that Earth are stereotypical and you know straight off the bat it's going to be boring. Thug gang kidnaps the innocents and they have to free themselves to reach the portal on time: who the hell didn't see that coming? A plot-line from 10,000 movies and TV shows.
Things get better when they visit a more advanced Earth than our own. For some reason, the foursome split up into two groups, which is asinine. Not quite as dumb as horny dumb teens splitting up in a haunted mansion, but still quite daft. It's not as if they were tourists strolling through Manhattan or Paris, sightseeing.
The finale became quite interesting, what with that elevator leading to who-knows-where-and-whom, and the appearance of the siblings' father. Or is he? The angry bald guy who makes gadgets hacks the building, which is a nice touch (I actually thought he was building yet another nuclear device to blow up THAT Earth as well! -' which would have been extremely stupid), but his warning about Carver remains unresolved: why did he try to warn the others about him? Where did Baldy go? Whom did he meet up there? What was he told by the building's makers? Not only is all of that unresolved, but we don't even get to find out what the mysterious sphere was for. I mean, Ronan had it in his bag since the movie started, and yet it never amounts to much more than a plot-device for Wu to tell us that there is a place called Coreworld.
That's the movie's basic problem: too many loose ends completely ignored and unexplained. A certain measure of mystery is perfectly acceptable -' even advisable -' for such movies, but too many loose ends lead to confusion and a sense that the script is underdeveloped. At the very least there should be a sequel to wrap things up, but low-budget indie movies aren't exactly known for sequeling themselves that much.
Aside for the fun premise, my biggest congrats goes to whoever cast Constance Wu, because that woman makes all the female A-listers look really bad (which isn't saying much), such a refreshment in the Age of Ugly Nepotists. I said this a million times, but I'll say it again: why can't a beautiful woman like her have a career the way Aniston and Kunis have? Because one is a nepotist and the other, well, we won't go into that. Or how about that daft little floozy Johansson? She gets hyped more than Coca Cola. Hollywood insiders will know exactly what I'm talking about. The outsiders will want to pelt me with food.
Review by fedor8 from the Internet Movie Database.