Gather around, children, and let me tell you the story of Film Twitter and Jupiter Ascending. While the most recent movie by the Wachowski Sisters was a flop with audiences and critics alike  —  it barely made back its budget internationally and holds down a whopping 26% at RottenTomatoes  —  there are those who found the film’s endearingly choppy characters and bright special effects to be part of one of the best science-fiction films of the decade. For you see, children, not every futuristic film needs to be about space marines and monsters. There are plenty of science-fiction fans who love them some goofy mumbo-jumbo as well.

So while executives at STX Entertainment are no doubt looking at the box office numbers from Jupiter Ascending and having a series of panic attacks about the upcoming release of Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets, director Luc Besson is just having a good time adding a goofball companion for his classic Fifth Element. Over the weekend, Besson celebrated his 58th birthday and shared a sneak peek (via at the upcoming Valerian trailer, hitting the internet this Wednesday:

While I’ll be the first to admit I don’t really know what’s going on with Valerian, given the charmingly idiosyncratic casting and the bright special effects, it’s hard not to think that Valerian could be the rare science-fiction movie that delights almost as much as it wows. With the aforementioned Fifth Element and 2014’s Lucy, Besson has already given us two of the better female-driven science-fiction movies of the last few decades. Here’s hoping that Besson can show the Star Trek movies what true intergalactic cooperation really looks like.

Here’s the full plot synopsis for Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets:

Valerian and Laureline are special operatives for the government of the human territories charged with maintaining order throughout the universe. Under directive from their Commander, the two embark on a mission to the breathtaking intergalactic city of Alpha, an ever-expanding metropolis comprised of thousands of different species from all four corners of the universe. Alpha’s seventeen million inhabitants have converged over time- uniting their talents, technology and resources for the betterment of all. Unfortunately, not everyone on Alpha shares in these same objectives; in fact, unseen forces are at work, placing our race in great danger.

Valerian stars Dane DeHaan, Cara Delevingne, Ethan Hawke, Clive Owen, Rihanna, and Rutger Hauer. The film will fly into theaters on July 21, 2017.

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