By Patrick Kevin Day
5:34 PM EST, December 10, 2012
New trailers out this week for two 2013 science fiction epics, "After Earth" and "Oblivion," feature different stars (Will Smith and Tom Cruise, respectively) who have one thing in common: a dire prediction for the future of humanity on our dear planet Earth.
"After Earth" is the new film from M. Night Shyamalan, who has stepped away from directing his own original scripts with this project, which is credited to writers Stephen Gaghan and Gary Whitta. It stars Smith as a spacefaring general and his son Jaden Smith playing the general's son, on patrol over the planet Earth 1,000 years after a cataclysmic event that left the planet uninhabited by people.
Of course, things go wrong. They crash and Smith the Younger must head out in search of aid for his badly injured father. The trailer promises a fair amount of "Avatar"-like natural wonder and monkeys. A whole lot of monkeys.
Meanwhile, "Oblivion" showcases a similarly unoccupied planet Earth, however the future for this planet isn't quite so verdant. The scorched Earth of director Joseph Kosinski's vision has more in common with Pixar's animated film "Wall-E" than "Avatar," with decimated football stadiums and lots and lots of barren earth.
In this movie, Cruise is a repairman -- just your average worker bee, who discovers that Earth isn't quite as uninhabited as he thought it was. Apparently, Morgan Freeman is also there. It doesn't get more fantastic than that.
"After Earth" opens on June 7, 2013, while "Oblivion" opens on April 12, 2013.