The modern remake of the 1951 sci-fi film The Day the Earth Stood Still attempts to update the older version, shifting its themes from Cold War political tension and the threat of human violence to the imminence of environmental retaliation from an abused Earth. Keanu Reeves, who plays the protagonist in this new version, explains:
The first one was borne out of the cold war and nuclear détente. Klaatu came and was saying cease and desist with your violence. If you can’t do it yourselves we’re going to do it. That was the film of that day. The version I was just working on, instead of being man against man, it’s more about man against nature. My Klaatu says that if the Earth dies, you die. If you die, the earth survives. I’m a friend to the earth.
The movie joins a few other recent films with possibly green messages. This one, with its apocalyptic setting, also stars Jennifer Connolly, Will Smith's kid Jaden, and Mad Men's Jon Hamm. I love most of the cast (though not all of it), but I don't know how I feel about the trailer for this one; it's just not pulling me in. The Day the Earth Stood Still opens December 12. To check out the trailer, read more.