It has more of the effects and spectacle of ‘the fifth element’. It just lacks the stellar characters. Sure, valerian and laureline are credible sci-fi special agents but there’s not much to them in this. All other characters are similarly OK, if a bit lacking depth.
It is l o n g. With snappier editing, some of the simplicity of the characters might have worked OK. As it is, they all get a lot of screen time to show that there’s not much there.
Despite some reasonable moralising and an attempt to contrast the human vs Alien morals and methods, the story doesn’t have much sophistication. Which is a shame. I’d rather have fewer FX and a better story with deeper characters.
See it if you liked fifth element and want more Alien FX. It’s a simple story told with simple characters in a beautifully illustrated world at great length.
I saw it in 3D. Like all 3D movies it adds nothing but a few jazzy FX.