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The Wandering Earth (2019)

Liu lang di qiu (original title)
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2:06 | Trailer
As the sun is dying out, people all around the world build giant planet thrusters to move Earth out of its orbit and sail Earth to a new star system. Yet the 2500-year journey comes with unexpected dangers, and in order to save humanity, a group of young people in this age of a wandering Earth fight hard for the survival of humankind.

Director:

Frant Gwo
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627 ( 89)
3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jing Wu ... Liu Peiqiang
Chuxiao Qu ... Liu Qi
Guangjie Li ... Wang Lei
Man-Tat Ng ... Han Ziang
Jin Mai Jaho Jin Mai Jaho ... Han Duoduo
Mike Kai Sui ... Tim
Hongchen Li Hongchen Li ... Zhang Xiaoqiang
Jingjing Qu Jingjing Qu ... Zhou Qian
Yichi Zhang Yichi Zhang ... Li Yiyi
Haoyu Yang ... He Lianke
Zhigang Jiang Zhigang Jiang ... Zhao Zhigang
Huan Zhang Huan Zhang ... Huang Ming
Jiayin Lei ... Yi Ge
Arkadiy Sharogradskiy Arkadiy Sharogradskiy ... Makalov
Hao Ning Hao Ning ... Er Shu
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Storyline

The sun is dying out. The earth will soon be engulfed by the inflating sun. To save the human civilization, scientists draw up an escape plan that will bring the whole human race from danger. With the help of thousands of infusion powered engines, the planet earth will leave the solar system and embark on a 2,500 year journey to the orbit of a star 4.5 light years away.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Action | Drama | Sci-Fi

Certificate:

TV-MA | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

China

Release Date:

5 February 2019 (China) See more »

Also Known As:

The Wandering Earth See more »

Filming Locations:

Qingdao, China See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$48,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,685,287, 10 February 2019, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$2,187,482, 10 February 2019
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Atmos

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.55 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Wanda Media originally invested heavily in this film, but later pulled out the fund for another romantic film. This move almost halt the film production, but luckily the team persuaded the actor Wu Jing to forfeit his pay, even made him investing in the film. Wu jing had one condition, that they must make it a "good film", which they faithfully achieved. The movie became a smashing hit in Chinese market, and Wu Jing will get his money back and much more. Interestingly, Wanda Group's other subsidiary, AMC theaters, is the major distributor of the film in the US. However, you will watch the film in subtitles without English voice dubbing. See more »

Goofs

It is not explained how the large surviving population eat, when the Earth is frozen and no crops can be grown. See more »

Connections

Featured in Kunlun Fight: Kunlun Fight 80 (2019) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Really misses the mark when trying to deliver a majestic and moving sci-fi experience
30 April 2019 | by themadmoviemanSee all my reviews

Having raked in over $600m at the box office, The Wandering Earth is yet another massive blockbuster from China. However, like so many enormous Chinese blockbusters in recent years, it's all style and no substance, with excessive emphasis on special effects and incoherent fantasy that really impedes any attempts to craft a more elegant or majestic space opera.

And that's where I want to start, because from the beginning of this movie, you'll likely be reminded of a number of other films that go about telling sci-fi stories in a rather different way. The Wandering Earth is based on a novel of its own, so it's not in any way a Chinese remake, but the premise and key ideas explored in the film, particularly in the opening act, are hugely reminiscent of both Christopher Nolan's Interstellar and Stanley Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Now, both Interstellar and 2001 are absolute masterpieces of modern sci-fi, because they tell a fantasy story with a stunning sense of grandeur and majesty that can't be achieved in any other genre. In that, while both movies have a plot and characters of their own, it's almost as if space itself is their main component, with astonishing visual effects playing into an eye-opening and almost spiritual depiction of the final frontier.

The Wandering Earth, on the other hand, takes a far more simplistic and unfortunately dull approach to telling a sci-fi story. It does have the special effects to dazzle (although I talk more about that in a moment), but it feels so much more like a formulaic space adventure movie, rather than the majestic space opera that it's so desperately trying to be.

Its opening sequence depicts the ever-intensifying threat of celestial destruction, and throughout, the film relates personal difficulties and tragedies in tandem with the danger of space travel and colonisation. And yet, while all of those ingredients make the film ripe for the sort of emotionally hard-hitting and elegant watch that is a great space opera, it's all overwhelmed by its more basic blockbuster tendencies.

In that, the film's quartet of young leads takes a little of the grandeur out of the story, bringing it closer to something reminiscent of the YA genre, while the special effects are often totally over the top, with an excessively brash and chaotic depiction of the dangers and threats present in space, something that really isn't necessary, as proved by better films such as Interstellar and Gravity.

On top of that, its near future setting, although only in the late 2050s, feels light years away from the present we know today. Unlike Interstellar, whose near future is almost identical to the present day, The Wandering Earth is full of fantasy and sci-fi gibberish about the Earth of the future that's both fairly incomprehensible and difficult to relate to, further taking away from your ability to emotionally engross yourself in the story and feel the real power of what this story has to offer.

And I say that because, despite not thinking much of the movie, there are moments where the film really tries hard to be something more majestic and elegant than just another space adventure. Its fantasy and excessive special effects often make it feel more like Jupiter Ascending than Interstellar, but there are a few moments of emotional intrigue and pathos that do indicate its intentions, and briefly provide an engrossing and impressive respite from an otherwise both chaotic and formulaic movie.

Overall, then, I wasn't particularly taken by The Wandering Earth. Its ambition is clear from the start, and with a premise that's reminiscent of real greats of modern sci-fi, it should have been an elegant, moving and majestic watch. However, with a generic plot that's far heavier on brash special effects, fantasy mumbo jumbo and chaotic action, it really misses the mark when delivering a sci-fi that's a little more special to the normal fare.


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