Road Rash Reviews

The Wandering Earth II [UHD and Blu-ray Steelbook] Review****-

Cert 12 | 173 mins | 2023

4 star epic sci-fi extravaganza.

The Wandering Earth II is a 2023 Chinese science-fiction blockbuster. Rather confusingly given the title, it is the prequel to the highly successful 2019 film, The Wandering Earth, which is based on the novella of the same name by Liu Cixin (The Three-Body Problem).

The screenplay is written by Gong Ge’er and Frant Gwo (Homecoming, The Sacrifice), who also directs.

It is out now on Blu-ray, DVD and Digital and will be available on Limited Edition 4K Ultra HD Steelbook from 11th December 2023, courtesy of Trinity CineAsia.

“The sun is rapidly degenerating and expanding. In 100 years, the sun will completely engulf Earth. In 300 years, the solar system will no longer exist.”

In the near future, Earth is facing almost certain destruction, as the sun begins to expand. Working side by side in global collaboration the UEG has come up with a potential solution to the this problem, known as the Moving Mountain Project. This proposes to build 10,000 “Earth Engines”, to propel the Earth away from the sun, towards Jupiter and ultimately out of the solar system altogether and onward to Alpha Centauri. Also proposed, but ultimately rejected and banned, was the Digital Life Project, which would preserve human civilisation using digital immortality by uploading human consciousness.

First things first though, Earth needs to be separated from the Moon’s influence. To this end, the Lunar Exile Project is created and the training of astronauts begins. Here we meet Liu Peiqiang (Jing WuWolf Warrior 2, Meg 2: The Trench), a young trainee and his eventually to be wife and fellow trainee Han Duoduo (Zhi Wang – Lose to Win, Home Coming). When Digital Life protestors sabotage the Space Elevator, these young trainees must step up to help save the programme.

On the Moon, computer programmer and former DLP member Tu Hengyu (Andy LauShock Wave: Hong Kong Destruction, Running Out of Time) is viewing a digital version of his late daughter Yaya (Ruoxi Wang – Come Out of the Bible), created by his mentor Ma Zhao (Li NingRestart the Earth). On Earth, many countries have distanced themselves from the Moving Mountains Project, leaving UEG leaders Zhou Zhezhi (Xuejian Li – To Love Again) and Hao Xiaoxi (Manzi – Morning Princess) to continue the work.

Can this unlikely team overcome all the hurdles that will be put before them and set the Earth on her new course for the salvation of humanity? (Hint: that’s what the second film is about).

“The main artery that links Earth and the Moon has been cut. We underestimated the oppositions power to infiltrate. 91% of Americans do not believe in the Moving Mountains Project.”

The Wandering Earth II is an impressive spectacle. The special effects are mind blowing and as science fiction films go, this one is certainly a contender. It is very long, coming in at almost 3 hours, so it’s a commitment, but they cram an awful lot into that time and it definitely never gets boring.

The acting is excellent and there is plenty of comedy to be had as well as action. Despite it’s blockbuster nature, this is actually a very intelligent film, albeit slightly confusing. It is presented in many languages, with the primary one being Mandarin, with English subtitles. The subtitles are very quick and for those who don’t want to deal with them, there is also an English dub available.

The characters and their relationships are well developed and you quickly get to know them and their motives, for better or worse. It does smack somewhat of Chinese propaganda, it will of course be them who save the world if the need arises, but it’s an enjoyable enough film to get away with it. The massive budget is put to good use with vast space stations, engines and Lunar landscapes which enhance the story without overwhelming it.

Very enjoyable and absolutely worth adding to your collection.

“People don’t see the Moon of yore, yet our Moon once shone on the ancients. The Moon will always stay in the memory of Mankind as we pine for our homeland.”

Trinity CineAsia presents The Wandering Earth II on Blu-ray, DVD & Digital from 30 October
On Limited Edition 4K Ultra HD Steelbook from 11 December
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DirectorFrant Gwo
AuthorLiu Cixin
GenreAction, drama, sci-fi
StarringAndy Lau, Jing Wu, Zhi Wang, Xuejian Li, Yanmanzi Zhu
Available to buy on : Own The Wandering Earth II [UHD & Blu-ray Steelbook] Steelbook