Spoiler Points for The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008)

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Spoiler Points for The Day the Earth Stood Still (2008) [PG-13] 103 minutes
WIP™ Scale: $12.00
DVD Release Date: Unscheduled (please check back)
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Spoiler Points for The Day the Earth Stood Still

If you got zapped by an alien ray knocking you unconscious half way through the film, then this spoiler is for you.

• Back in the 1920s, in the mountains of India, a man (who looks like Keanu Reeves) is struggling against the cold. As he explores his surroundings, he climbs an ice wall and comes across a beautiful glowing sphere. He pecks away at the ice shielding it and gets knocked unconscious. He awakens to a strange mark on his hand.
• Back in the present, Dr. Helen Benson (Jennifer Connelly) heads home after giving her lab class a devilish question about which archaebacteria would be likely to live on one of Jupiter's moons. She arrives to find her obnoxious step son (Jaden Smith) being obnoxious. Just as dinner's about ready, she receives a call saying people will be there in minutes to pick her up—matter of national security. She's taken to a helicopter and finds she's among a team of elite scientists and others needed to advised the government on what to do after an impending doomsday event. Long range satellite data reveals a streaking asteroid headed directly for earth with an impact expected in New York City in less than 70 minutes. Her buddy, Michael Granier (Jon Hamm) is the one who put her on the special list.
• Hovering in a helicopter not far from the expected point of impact in Central Park, Manhattan, they await the collision. Instead, however, the meteor just settles in the park. As they go to investigate, the marvelous glowing sphere opens to reveal a body. As he approaches, he's shot by a trigger happy soldier. A giant robot emerges, and immediately goes on the defensive. When the treat is neutralized, he shuts down.
• Back in a secret government facility set up, the alien undergoes surgery, and the physician removes the outer "whale blubber" like tissue from his body. Eventually, it reveals a giant baby-like humanoid. DNA analysis reveals it to be of three different types of organisms. The Secretary of Defense, Regina Jackson (Kathy Bates) demands to speak with the alien when he emerges a full-grown adult. Klaatu (Keanu Reeves—who else but Keanu could play Klaatu?) evasive in answering her questions preferring to speak to all the world's people at once. She says it's not possible, and demands to know what he wants with our planet. "Your planet?" he exclaims—of course when you first hear this you assume he's referring to the planet as belonging to someone else, but later you realize he means of all the earth's creatures, it's pretty brazen to claim it belongs to humans any more than any other of her species.
• Jackson wants him sedated and interrogated. Benson volunteers to sedate him over the strenuous objections of her colleagues who vow not to assist the government in this way. But, she substitutes saline for the drugs they want to use on him allowing him later to escape from the interrogation in the interrogators suit. He flees to Philadelphia where he passes out in the train station. The police find him and call Helen. He rushes to pick him up taking her obnoxious son with her.
• At a McDonald's he meets up with another alien who's been living on earth for 70 years initially upset about his assignment, he's come to love the earthlings and see their dual purpose. Still, he cannot recommend anything less than the worst possible fate. He says that humans sense it's coming anyway. With that, Klaatu asks to be driven to the woods where he initiates a process of causing spheres all over the planet to emerge from below ground. Jackson and the military quickly figure out that the orbs contain the earth's species and will serve as the 'ark' so to speak. This causes them alarm as to what could be the flood.
• When he returns to the car after telling her in the woods that "If the earth dies, humans die. If humans die, the earth survives," a cop has arrived having found the car based on tips from people who recognized him at the McDonald's. He uses his powers to kill the cop between the two cars, and then resuscitates him using his special gel and electricity from the car's battery. They then flee. She realizes he can stop this whole thing if he wants. He says he cannot because he tried to reason with our leaders, but they wouldn't listen. She says he's not talked to the right people, and she can take him to them.
• Meanwhile, the military is doing everything it can to get to the bottom of this. They have tried to destroy the sphere in Central Park, they've captured the robot by putting him into a big magnetic box and then lowered him into a sealed laboratory hundreds of feet underground. They are attempting to drill into him with a diamond tipped drill to no avail. And no one is eager to go in and fix the drill.
• At Professor Barnhardt's (John Cleese) home, Klaatu solves a math equation on his blackboard and comments as to the beauty of the Bach on the stereo. Barnhardt has so many questions, and argues in defense of the human race. The obnoxious Jacob sees that Klaatu is wanted on the news and phones in their location. Helicopters arrive to catch them just as Barnhardt suggests that humans need one more chance on the edge of a precipice to change.
• Klaatu, Jacob, and Helen run into the woods for sanctuary, but instead men drop down on bungee ropes and extract her. For some reason, they do not capture Klaatu or rescue the boy. Back in the presence of Jackson, Helen begs for the opportunity to use the trust she's developed to convince Klaatu to stop the process. Jackson's skeptical of her ability to persuade him and believes she's got everything under control.
• Jacob realizes he's lost and stranded and tries to ignore Klaatu. When Klaatu rescues him from falling into a river, he has a sudden change of heart and asks Klaatu to help him find his way home. Klaatu doesn't hold a grudge and helps the boy.
• The robot, affectionately called GORT (an acronym for his genetically controlled technology), is exhibiting signs of activating in the chamber. His red laser eye follows the department of defense operative back and forth in the room. A technician is sent in to fix the drill and as he does, something unexpected happens. The drill and then his suit are eaten and then he's eaten by metallic aphids. Soon they start devouring everything in the chamber and going after the glass shield between the examination chamber and the operation chamber. The facility is locked down and no one escapes. Missiles are launched on the site to contain the spread, but they just devour everything in their path and grow and multiply by the gazillions. They are so powerful they act like swarms of locusts swarming across the land and instantly disintegrating every man made thing.
• Realizing there's nothing anyone can do to stop this except Klaatu, Secretary Jackson releases Helen to try to convince him. She's on her own, except that Michael volunteers to go with her.
• Helen gets a call from Jacob who has a plan in his mind that Klaatu can bring his dead father back to life, so he suggests that they meet up with his mom at his father's cemetery. Unfortunately, Klaatu cannot bring his father back. Helen runs up to give him comfort, and then they all head out to Central Park as Klaatu has now seen that humans are capable of change and love.
• When they arrive at the checkpoint, they are waved through. It's all too easy. Guess why? When they get close to the ship, land mines blow up their vehicle. Fortunately, Klaatu, Helen, and Jacob survive—not so much for Michael.
• The swarm of metallic locusts devours Giants Stadium in New Jersey on its way to dissolving New York City. It approaches Central Park. Helen begs Klaatu to try and stop it. He isn't sure it's possible, but he tries to head toward the ship. The swarm approaches and overcomes them. Jacob is infected. Klaatu uses his powers to dram them out of the little boy. He then runs to the ship. He barely makes it inside. Something happens, and the swarms fall apart, dead to the ground in heaps of silvery sand. The ship leaves.
• The End

Now was anyone else a little disappointed with this ending? Come on? What happened to the final Klaatu speech from the original where he tells us if we don't stop our war mongering ways the rest of the planets will reduce ours to a cinder? Huh? What? Am I supposed to believe that now we got the message? Won't the military just thing that might won vs. right? Won't this now cause zero change? I think they should have made this a sequel to the original and that this was the second strike, the third would simply be annihilation from deep space. We have 10 years to turn things around or have it done for us. Then, yeah, that maybe would have sunken in.

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