Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, Cara Delevingne, Dane DeHaan, Luc Besson

‘Valerian And The City Of A Thousand Planets‬’: Early Reviewers Marvel At Luc Besson’s Fantastic Fantasy

Some might have thought Luc Besson’s vision for the film adaptation of Pierre Christin’s comic book was too ambitious, but now that early critics are praising Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, it seems the director is vindicated. In fact, judging by early reports, the Cara Delevingne and Dane DeHaan-led film may prove to be among the biggest blockbusters of the year.

Valerian And The City Of A Thousand Planets Delivers A Visually Stunning Sci-Fi Epic

Three weeks from the official theatrical premiere, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets is already captivating audiences with early previews, and as Syfy Wire reports, the visually stunning world created by Luc Besson is well worth the price of admission. Even so, previous trailers for the science fiction thriller seemed to rely on visual effects, exotic aliens, and high octane action to seduce film fans, leaving some to wonder what the Pierre Christin story is all about.

Valerian (Dane DeHaan) and Laureline (Cara Delevingne) are operatives for a human organization, essentially working as galactic police officers charged with keeping order in the universe. While Laureline is as dedicated to her duty as she is beautiful, Valerian is often distracted from his profession by his lovely partner. While DeHaan’s character makes a habit of chasing Laureline, Cara Delevingne plays up the uninterested object of his affection all too well.

Clive Owen plays the couple’s commander in Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, sending them to Alpha, the tropical tourist trap alluded to within the title of the Luc Besson film. Aliens from all over the galaxy come to Alpha to relax and have a good time, but, as Valerian and Laureline are soon to learn, some visitors to Alpha have more nefarious intentions for the city of a thousand planets.

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, Cara Delevingne
Cara Delevingne shines amid the visual spectacle of ‘Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets,’ a Luc Besson film. [Image by EuropaCorp]

Early Screenings Of Valerian And The City Of A Thousand Planets Leave Critics Breathless

Collider shares a massively positive response from audiences lucky enough to have attended early screenings of Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. Chiefly among the early reviews is the magazine’s own editor-in-chief, Steven Weintraub, who praised the film on Twitter for its grand vision and stunning visual effects.

Weintraub adds that Cara Delevingne shines as Laureline, delivering her “best performance yet,” playing against DeHaan’s Valerian with the kind of chemistry rarely experienced.

Mr. Weintraub wasn’t alone in his praise of Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.

“I had such a great time at #Valerian. For realsies, it’s a fresh and fun space fantasy adventure. I really hope audiences embrace it!” tweeted Clarke Wolfe.

Writing for Slash Film, Peter Sciretta praises Luc Besson for delivering a “unpredictable and bonkers insane” opening, but adds that the second half of the film gets more predictable.

“Despite its problems, #Valerian needs to be experienced in 3D on the biggest screen possible. I want to experience more of this world,” adds Sciretta in a follow-up tweet.

Luc Besson, Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets
Luc Besson populates ‘Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets’ with a vast sampling of aliens, from the cute to the hideous. [Image by EuropaCorp]

Other early reviews continue to commend Besson for creating the stunning worlds seen in the film and delivering unique, wild action sequences, while many also add that the film should be seen on the biggest possible screen to really appreciate the movie’s scope.

While negative reviews are few and far between, there also seems to be a consensus that Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets loses steam after the halfway mark. Yet, many of those feeling disappointment with the second half of Besson’s epic are still recommending the sci-fi feature.

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets opens in theaters on July 21.

[Featured Image by EuropaCorp]

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