Review of The Last Starfighter (1984)

Moving picture, 101 minutes

Seen in 2016.

In retrospect it’s interesting to watch almost entirely because its special effects have aged so poorly compared to those of Star Wars (1977), which it imitates. Unlike TRON (1982), The Last Starfighter does not excuse its CGI as diegetic, merely associating it with an arcade game, as the model for that game. The best thing about the script is the humanization of Beta, who is treated here with very little of the knee-jerk contempt normally poured over copies of people in popular science fiction. I wish the Frontier had not been so ridiculously massive.

References here: Lensman (1984), Kenny Starfighter (1997).

moving picture fiction