Review: Another Earth – it’s not a sci-fi story

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Another Earth (Fox Searchlight)

I received a copy of Another Earth (Fox Searchlight) for review on my dad blog. The indie movie is about a world where two Earths exists. Bottom line: if you’re looking for a good science fiction story, you’ll be disappointed with this film. However, Another Earth is worth watching if you love a good drama. It’s an excellent story with good acting. The three-disc Another Earth Blu-ray combo pack (Blu-ray, DVD, digital copy) is available now for $39.99 (currently $19.99 on Amazon).

It’s a drama
Another Earth is a sad drama about a young woman seeking redemption for something she did. Four years ago, 17-year-old Rhoda drives home a little drunk after partying with her friends. She looks at the sky and sees the second Earth. Then she crashes into another car and ends up killing two people. Rhoda then spends the next four years in prison instead of attending MIT. When she gets out, Rhoda is a shell of the person she was before the accident. Now she looks and feels sad. She can’t get over her guilt for what she did and lives a meaningless life as a janitor. Then one day, she gets an unexpected opportunity and tries to redeem herself by making someone’s life a little bit better every day.

A second Earth magically appears
There is a little science fiction element in Another Earth. As a result of an unexplainable cosmic event, an exact duplicate of Earth appears from a parallel universe. Not only does it appear, but it is also moving closer and closer to our Earth (without any gravitational effects). The existent of Earth Two is an important element in the story, but it’s only mentioned from time to time in the movie (no dazzling special effects). The sci-fi element is used primarily to get us to think about questions like: if you could meet your other self, what would you say or would your other self be the same because he/she did the exact same things you did, or would your other self be different because he/she made different decisions.

Believable characters
The stars of Another Earth are Brit Marling (Rhoda Williams) and William Mapother (John Burroughs). They both do an excellent job and are very believable — especially Brit, who you can see changing as the story progressed. The movie also featured Matthew-Lee Erlbach (Alex), DJ Flava (himself), Meggan Lennon (Maya Burroughs – John’s wife), AJ Diana (John’s son), Jordan Baker (Kim Williams – Rhoda’s mom), Flint Beverage (Robert Williams – Rhoda’s dad), Robin Taylor (Jeff Williams – Rhoda’s brother), and Rupert Reid (Keith Harding). Another Earth was directed by Mike Cahill.

Two free music downloads
The Blu-ray combo pack is a three-disc set. In addition to including the movie in three formats (Blu-ray, DVD, digital copy), the combo pack also includes two free downloadable songs from Fall On Your Sword, deleted scenes, a music video (The First Time I Saw Jupiter), the Science Behind Another Earth feature, Creating Another Earth feature, and a Fox Movie Channel feature (Direct Effect with Mike Cahill, In Character with Brit Marling, and In Character with William Mapother).

Rated PG-13
The 92-minute movie is rated PG-13 for disturbing images, some sexuality, nudity and brief drug use.

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