Jaden Smith‘s new movie with dad WillÂ has us sitting firmly at “whelmed”: After EarthÂ is a sci-fi adventure about a father and son who crash-land on Earth a thousand years after humans have abandoned the planet we fucked up. The fact that M. Night ShyamalanÂ is directing is a definite cause for caution since his past few movies have been disasters, from the racebending scandal surrounding Avatar: The Last AirbenderÂ to the utter wtf-ness of the more similar what-is-happening-to-our-planet movie The Happening.
Despite the misgivings already in place, Sony premiered a teaser trailer at San Diego Comic-Con, setting up the world of After Earth. Using Facebook Timeline, it traces an alternate history where a spacecraft crashes on Earth in 1908, setting into action a chain of events that sees humans becoming more advanced and then majorly screwing things up, all overseen by a family called the Raiges.
The most interesting part of the trailer for me is that fact that Will and Jaden’s characters are both Raiges, despite their ancestor from 1908 being a white Polish dude. According to this faux-Timeline, in 2010 John Raige marries Lyshonda Mercerâ€”I don’t know what’s funnier, that they gave her a stereotypical name or that the copy on the Timeline event reads, John Raige finally gains Top Secret clearance and is brought on to the Lighstream Project. In his euphoria, he proposes to Lyshonda Mercer, an African-American.Â Well, that’s my contribution to the conversation. Here’s the official synopsis:
In After Earth, one thousand years after cataclysmic events forced humanity’s escape from Earth, Nova Prime has become mankind’s new home. Legendary General Cypher Raige (played by Will Smith) returns from an extended tour of duty to his estranged family, ready to be a father to his 13-year-old son, Kitai (played by Jaden Smith). When an asteroid storm damages Cypher and Kitai’s craft, they crash-land on a now unfamiliar and dangerous Earth. As his father lies dying in the cockpit, Kitai must trek across the hostile terrain to recover their rescue beacon. His whole life, Kitai has wanted nothing more than to be a soldier like his father. Today, he gets his chance.
We’ve got a ways to wait: After EarthÂ doesn’t come out til June 7, 2013.
Photo: Sony Pictures