Movie Review: Ready Player One


Ready Player One stands in stark contrast to Spielberg’s latest movie The Post, touching on social standards and uprisings while integrating animation and advanced technology. (Fair Use: Instagram)

It is 2045, the dawning age where people can escape their reality into the OASIS, a virtual world where one can go anywhere, do anything, and be anyone they desire. After death, OASIS creator James Halliday leaves his fortune and control of the game to a winner determined by a contest. The race is on to find all three keys required to unlock the hidden Easter egg within the game’s walls. After five years of searching with no sight of any clues, unlikely hero Wade Watts manages to complete the first challenge. He and his friends, also known as the High Five, are sent into a magical world of danger and adventure. The High Five are faced with the task of saving the OASIS from Innovative Online Industries, a multinational corporation desperate to take control of the OASIS and monetize the platform.

While many rejoiced over the revamp of this imaginative book, the movie was pre-dispositioned for hate and harsh critique. Even before the release, critics flocked to judge the movie’s dive into self-pity, male ego and the constantly expanding world of technology. Many questioned if director Steven Spielberg would be able to live up to the fantasy that fans created in their minds, or if he would simply display a poorly-crafted video game movie. Upon the release of the movie, it was clear Spielberg was able to surpass what many of the critics expected.

Steven Spielberg takes audiences back in time while bringing them forward into a new age. By digging up memories of games such as Adventure, Pac-Man and Pitfall and references to movies such as The Shining and Blade Runner, he is able to both capture nostalgic viewers and enchant oblivious newcomers.

The balance between digital animation and real-life acting provides perfect contrast and connections of the two worlds. Actors such as Tye Sheridan, Olivia Cooke and Ben Mendelsohn play characters with complex storylines and portray emotions integral to the story plot.

Spielberg combines action with horror as audiences are continuously transported through different worlds and adventures packed within the 140-minute movie. Spielberg is known as a director willing to spend more time to develop plots and scenes to perfect the fluidity between shots. For Ready Player One this means integrating pop culture into every aspect of the movie, which succeeds in keeping viewers captivated and interested.

Ready Player One delves deeper than virtual reality. This movie highlights dividing social classes and Earth pollution through its animated characters and high-speed chases. In shining light upon the poverty and destruction the world is living in, it is clear this is a warning to current and future generations.