[THIS REVIEW IS FOR THE THEATRICAL VERSION.]
“Jack Harper: 60 years ago, Earth was attacked. We won the war, but they destroyed half the planet. Everyone’s been evacuated. Nothing human remains. We’re here for drone repair. We’re the “mop-up crew”.
If you want to see a fun film with romance, excitement, plausible futuristic inventions, weaponry and computer-control, complete with Big Sister and the apparent salvation of the human race, watch this film.
The film’s beginnings concern an apocalypse of sorts, where in 2017 Man won, at a terrible cost, a war with an alien invasion. The remnants of that war, fought by the alien Scavs, want Jack (Tom Cruise) but not to kill him but to capture him.
The cloud condo (I like to call it) has everything, complete with swimming facilities, showers, food and a hot red-headed, Brit-accented woman (Victoria) who also happens to be Jack’s lover and communications officer.
Every morning Jack goes out on patrol, fixes downed drones, and they complain to “management” up in “Tat”, a large module miles wide, that is shuttling the last of humanity to its new colony on Saturn’s moon, Titan.
And every morning the communication from Tat asks , “Are you an effective team?” and all hell will break loose if it’s other than “Yes!”
Who could ask for more?
There’s more to the story than that. We are introduced to an apparency. And like Matrix, there is more than meets the eye and all is revealed, in bits and pieces, as the alien resistance, led by Morgan Freeman’s character, Beech, is also not all it seems.
Plots and Points:
I won’t reveal much, just to say the story will be familiar to many sci-fi fans. The action is non-stop (but it’s not a military film), and the story slowly unfolds (but it’s not Matrix). The plausible machinery (the dragonfly-like helicopter-ship with space travel capability) and Jack’s cool, futuristic motorcycle are fun to watch and experience.
The film’s expostulation of what our world will be like is shocking – New York is completely wiped out. We have the library, subway system and the Brooklyn Bridge at hand. What sci-fi movie does NOT have the Statute of Liberty’s arm up in the air, a common feature in these types of films since the Planet of the Apes!
Best scenes: Getting your cycle stolen from aliens. I mean, that’s really a shame! The humor as Jack catches that ball at the stadium, site of the 2017 World Series. And the hideaway that Jack keeps, a mountain lake and cabin, with remnants of humanity’s technology (great Jazz vinyl) unknown to his partner Victoria.
When a signal brings down Odyssey, a ship that’s been in orbit “pre-War”, and one survivor, a woman who had been in his flashback dreams, completely destroys all the harmony and substance of Jack’s world and sends him on a frantic hunt to find the truth or meet elimination at the guns of drones!
Bottom Line: If you like your sci-fi with great scenes, seamless CGI and a constant plot with no pausing, then see this film. The film does take some concentration and if you’re observant, you can follow along just fine. In fact I may get the DVD to fill in any points I missed.
IMAX, was worth it!
Cast & Crew:
Joseph Kosinski (screenplay) and
Karl Gajdusek (screenplay) and
Michael Arndt (screenplay)
Tom Cruise … Jack
Morgan Freeman … Beech
Olga Kurylenko … Julia
Andrea Riseborough … Victoria