“2010: Moby Dick” – Melville’s novel gets a low-budget sci-fi update

The first time I read Herman Melville’s “Moby Dick,” was in high school.  Thanks to a brilliant teacher, my entire class got caught up in the story and I’ve held the book in high regard ever since.

So of COURSE I watched “2010: Moby Dick” when I realized it was a) a real movie that actually existed, and b) streamed on Netflix. My love for books is only rivaled by my love for adaptations of books, and this seemed like it was going to be a train wreck.

Train wreck, indeed.

Barry Bostwick (Brad from “Rocky Horror” if you needed a reminder) and Renee O’Connor (who was apparently on “Xena: Warrior Princess”) star in this low-budget sci-fi adaptation of Melville’s novel. Here, Ahab is the Captain of the U.S.S. Peaquod, which has been charged with tracking down the legendary 500 foot whale that’s been collapsing ships all over the world.  The crew of the Peaquod grabs Doctor Michelle Herman (O’Connor) and tosses her into their submarine as they venture out looking for the whale.

Friends, I have to tell you – The first line of Melville’s “Moby Dick” is the narrator, Ishmael, saying simply, “Call me Ishmael.”  Dr. Michelle is introduced listening to the sounds of whales on headphones.  Her trusty assistant calls to her a few times – “Doc!”  She removes her headphones and replies… “Call me Michelle.”

I snorted.  Seriously.

The grand conclusion features some of the worst computer effects I’ve seen in a long time.  In addition, Barry Bostwick’s big climactic moment comes when he takes off on an inflatable boat toward Moby Dick, armed with a gun that may be a spray-painted Super Soaker.  This is, of coure, after he replaces his (once again) blown off leg with a cross from an old leper colony.  Of course, when he finally charges the whale, it appears his leg has been restored to totally normal and there’s no trace of the wooden leg.

It’s really campy, really bad, but actually quite fun.  I’m not going to lie – It wasn’t a waste of 90 minutes of my life.


About JamieP

Books. Adventures. Chicago. Married. Mommy. Cat.

Posted on May 19, 2011, in Uncategorized and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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