New "Earth Stood Still" Isn't Just Eco-Horror

If Keanu Reeves seems to be acting a little stiffly in the new remake of the 1951 classic The Day The Earth Stood Still, it's entirely intentional. Reeves spent a lot of time thinking about his movements in the film, trying to use his physicality to seem as alien as possible without acting too quirky, director Scott Derrickson tells MTV. Meanwhile, the new all-CGI Gort (pictured) is as close to the 1950s version as possible, because Gort is a classic. Also, Derrickson says reports that the new Stood Still are all about the alien Klaatu warning us to stop destroying the environment are a tad exaggerated.

It's partly true, as Reeves suggested, that Klaatu comes to warn us about the way we're destroying our environment. But he's also concerned about our other naughty behavior, says Derrickson:

I think that this film in some ways is an attempt to address a number of issues that are amongst the most pressing issues for the human race. The original, being a Cold War film, was addressing what was clearly the greatest threat for the human race at that time, mutual nuclear destruction, and that's not the most pressing threat that we face now. It's also man vs. man. We are destroying each other as well. Our country's at war right now. There is certainly the issue being addressed in the movie of our treatment of one another on the planet. I think it's a movie about human nature as much as anything else and how human nature is acting itself out in the world right now.

Oh, and the Klaatu=Jesus subtext in the original film? Still very much intact.

Meanwhile, according to Derrickson, Jennifer Connelly plays Helen Benson, a Princeton microbiology professor who's drafted by the government into helping to cope with a strange occurrence. [MTV movies]