Director: Jonathan Mostow
Writer: Michael Ferris (screenplay), John D. Brancato (screenplay), Robert Venditti (graphic novel), Brett
Weldele (graphic novel)
Starring: Bruce Willis, Radha Mitchell, Rosamund Pike, James Cromwell, and Ving Rhames
alternate universe where people have developed technology to send robots out into the world as them. they can be controled by the power of the user's mind bullets, and can be as young or buxom as the user wants. FBI guy tries to figure out where a device is that can kill people through their surrogates. lots, and lots of background into FBI guy's past. takes place in boston. "?"
There were entertaining moments in this movie, but it doesn't even qualify as awesomely bad by my sometimes-extremely-liberal standards. This is not "American Ninja," or the Bruce Leroy movie. This is actually kind of like the Don the Dragon virtual reality movie... except that that one was more plausible.
Starting with the basic conceit, I had nothing for this. Why would you go to the insane expense of fabricating artificial bodies for actual, physical interaction with other artificial bodies? I could actually write a lot about this topic, but I'll continue. The plot of this movie also shares elements with "Demolition Man." Bruce Willis as Sandra Bullock. And the bigger mystery is excruciatingly convoluted, like they crammed hundreds of graphic novel pages into 85 fucking minutes.
Acting is alright, I suppose; and one could attribute the relative lack of softness and expression to a conscious choice... if one wanted to be charitable. The problem with a hypothesis like that is that Bruce Willis doesn't stand out enough when he returns his corporeal form to the actual universe, and neither do the "meat puppets" or whatever the fuck they're called. Of course, that differentiation would give away the ending, and we wouldn't want to do that. Oh, no. We would want you to be shocked by something that you totally wouldn't have seen in the prologue, with the fucking RKO Radio logo flashing behind the footage.
What did stand out here was the makeup. The surrogates themselves looked a little plastic-y and had dead eyes which were actually pretty creepy. It's too bad nobody else on the production staff saw the potential of this premise, because what stood out in the other direction was the direction and the editing. The runtime was full of ridiculous close-ups at odd angles and super-repetitive, super-quick cuts which might have been intended to give the impression of urgency, but which just made us feel like we were in the mind of a crackhead. There seriously were sequences with that ZOOM sound effect followed by a bit of dialog followed by more ZOOMing. This permeates the entire, stupid, experience.
I did not like this movie. This movie was dumb.
this movie was only 1hour 28 minutes and most of the time was spent on the set up, and explanation of the alternate universe. so when there was actually a plot point in the "mystery" it was obvious, and made the "mystery" easy to figure out. the ending was really predictable, and i'm not sure whether it was supposed to be. the budget seemed weirdly small, or maybe mis-spent is a better term. great concept, and great details, but once again it seemed like the hollywood machine, warped it to stupid. i guess one should always be wary of a main stream movie set at 80 minutes. it seems shocking to me that names like james cromwell, and ving rhames, and i guess bruce willis would agree to be in such a poor movie. maybe the graphic novel was way cooler? maybe it was edited to unrecognizable? all in all: boo. bad choices made all around.