Monday, May 31, 2021

Movie Monday: Chaos Walking

Since the pandemic started and theaters closed (I am not fully vaccinated yet), we have mostly avoided new release movies. Why pay for a movie at home when so many are available for free? But we made an exception this weekend when I saw that Chaos Walking had finally been released, after many delays. It is based on a book trilogy by the same name by Patrick Ness that my husband, son, and I had all enjoyed very much. It's a bit misleading because Chaos Walking is the name of the whole trilogy, and this movie (I'm guessing the first of three) is really just adapted from the first book, The Knife of Never Letting Go. My husband and I both enjoyed the movie adaptation and thought they did a good job of capturing the first book.

Todd, played by Tom Holland of Spiderman fame, is the only boy in his town of Prentisstown, where all citizens are men, and there are no women. It is clear that this is not Earth, though the terrain looks similar. The men are all afflicted by The Noise here. All of their thoughts can be heard by others; there are no secrets here. Can you imagine? Todd's mother, along with the other women, died long ago, and he has been brought up by two kind men, Ben and Cillian, who care for him on their farm. Mayor Prentiss, played by Mads Mikkelsen, can be somewhat menacing at times, though he's kind to Todd. Everything in Prentisstown changes in an instant when a spacecraft crash lands nearby, with a single occupant, a young girl named Viola, played by Daisy Ridley of Star Wars. Todd finds Viola in the woods and is shocked since he has never seen a girl before (remember that Viola can hear all his thoughts!). When the townsmen start coming after Viola, Ben urges Todd to run and to keep her safe. As the two young people, and Todd's dog, Manchee, run off through the forests, lakes, and rivers, they are chased by the men of Prentisstown but must also avoid the dangerous natives of the planet, creatures called Spackle. They are trying to find another town that Ben told them about, where Viola might be able to make contact with the next ship of colonizers that is on its way.

So, as you can tell by the description, this is a sci fi adventure/thriller, with lots of action and suspense. Being able to hear Todd's thoughts adds some elements of humor to the movie, to lighten the sometimes-tense mood. Tom Holland and Daisy Ridley are the stars here, with the majority of the screen time, and they are both outstanding actors, though the supporting cast is good, too (I was surprised to see Nick Jonas). For lovers of the books, like us, it seemed like the movie held pretty close to the events of the book (it's been a while since we read it, which is usually the best way to see a book adaptation on screen). My one disappointment was you couldn't hear Manchee's (the dog) thoughts in the movie. Hearing Manchee's doggie thoughts was the funniest part of the book! Overall, we enjoyed the movie and are looking forward to the next one--hopefully, we won't have to wait as long for that one.

Chaos Walking is a new release, so it is available in some theaters, but it is also available for a small fee at the usual pay-per-view options, including Redbox, YouTube, Google Play, and Amazon, where we watched it. Like I said, we don't normally pay for at-home movies, but I figured $5.99 is quite a bargain compared to about $30 for two tickets and popcorn in the theater!


  1. This sounds like a great movie—what a fascinating premise! I certainly cannot imagine having my own thoughts heard by everyone else! I hadn't heard of the trilogy this movie is based on, though I have read and enjoyed a book by Ness called The Rest of Us Just Live Here.

    By the way, I got this post through Mailchimp today! I'm glad you were able to get that working—you're only the second blog I've seen (besides myself) that's changed email subscription systems, so I'm wondering if I'll see more of that this month or if a lot of bloggers will just get rid of that feature. Thanks so much for the great post!

    1. The book trilogy was REALLY great - my husband, son, and I all really enjoyed it :)

      Yay! Thanks for confirming you got the new Mailchimp e-mail. I posted one last announcement post that will go out on Feedburner, then I'll deactivate it - using your instructions! You'll see I gave you a little shout-out - couldn't have done it without you! And I am working through your video one more time for my other blog now! Making progress. You have no idea how much I was dreading all this, so thanks! I bet most others are waiting until the last minute, as I probably would have without you :)