Film Review – Europa Report (2013)

Europa Report - post

Title: Europa Report (2013)

Director: Sebastian Cordero (Rage)

Cast: Daniel Wu, Sharlto Copley, Michael Nyqvist, Karolina Wydra, Anamaria Marinca, Isiah Whitlock Jr., Dan Fogler

Plot: A crew is sent on a discovery mission to one of Jupiter’s moons, Europa. Told in found footage format the story charts the crews journey to the planet and journey within themselves.

“Even if we found nothing it’s an effective discovery”

Review by Eddie on 17/06/2014

Sebastian Cordero’s low budget Sci-Fi flick certainly gets an A for effort but as a final product the mark sadly can not be so high. Featuring a vast range of ideas and concepts, Europa Report feels like a story that could be told in a better way thanks to the films strange and uprooting structure and some pretty low grade acting efforts.

A major part of making a successful space set Sci-Fi is having a crew that the audience can associate and jump on board with eg; a Sunshine or Alien and Europa Report just doesn’t have this despite a few recognizable faces. The found footage format of the film is a neat trick for such a tale but the way in which Cordero mixes it all in with talking earth bound heads, a strange editing process that flaunts between early mission footage and later mission footage is nothing more than distracting and a crew that we barely get to know kills any chance the movie had to make us forget the budget is small and scope limited. It’s a shame that these actors couldn’t do more with the limited material as at the core of this tale is a pretty ripe idea.

All humans feel a strong association with discovery and the quest for answers in the universe and at times Europa Report taps into this human condition to offer up senses of wonder and also fear. Segments set on Europa itself offer up some tension filled moments with a probe sent under ice and a walk on the planet examples of what could of been a more thrilling experience but overall the sense of discovery is not central enough and you’ll find yourself counting down the minutes whenever the crew takes focus once more.

A strong idea, a neat ending and some scenes of tension can’t help Europa Report become anything more than a neat idea on paper that didn’t get translated into a quality Sci-Fi you get the feeling was not that far out of reach. Sometimes effort and concept can only get you so far.

2 inconvenient hydrazine leaks out of 5

20 responses to “Film Review – Europa Report (2013)

  1. Oddly enough, I liked Europa Report. I guess it’s because I knew nothing about it going in. I did think it was a much better cosmic “found-footage” film than “Apollo 18.”

    • Hey Matt – for sure man it was tons better than Apollo 18 which was all types of scary in the wrong ways. I definitely liked elements of Europa but as a whole it was pretty disappointing.

      • Certain stories, like the first one (and my favorite chapter), packed a bit more fright than others for me. Still interesting, though, if you like the series. Also, be ready for another sequel coming soon called “V/H/S: Viral.”

  2. Good review Eddie. Yeah, for some reason, I hated this movie. Just everything about it felt wrong and hardly made any sense. Especially once everybody started dying and the ending made it seem like they hardly cared at all.

  3. See, now I liked “Apollo 18” better. It was, for me, creepier and better acted. But then I had such low expectations for it, whereas I really wanted to like “Europa Report”, but just couldn’t.

  4. I couldn’t disagree more. I myself love this high sci fi genre. Europa Report provides a very detailed plausible story of the events on a deep space mission. The strong focus on science drives this movie on a perfect pace leading to mission accomplished ending. I compare this movie to Boyle’s Sunshine.

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