Director: Joseph Kosinski
Starring: Tom Cruise, Morgan Freeman, Olga Kurylenko, Andrea Riseborough
Joseph Kosinski creates a visually fantastic world that enthralls us and leaves us in awe in the movie Oblivion. I wasn’t expecting this movie to be anything special, but I was surprised at the sleek design and amazing landscapes the movie provided us along with a unique story that leaves us guessing right up until the very end.
Tom Cruise is Jack Harper, who resides on an abandoned earth with his partner/lover Victoria (Riseborough) as a sort of “clean up crew” of what is left of the planet. 60 years ago earth was caught up in a war against an alien invasion, we won the war but drastic measures left the planet uninhabitable. What was left of the human race now lives on the space station TET and they have left behind giant machinery that convert the earth’s seawater into some form of energy for the TET, with drones protecting them by destroying any of the aliens (also called Scavs/Scavengers) that fight to wipe out these machines. Harper and Victoria’s mission is to repair these drones.
Harper begins to question his mission when he witnesses one of these drones kill human survivors of a crash-landed space shuttle. Even more questions pop up when one of the survivors of this shuttle seems to have met him before and when he gets captured by Scavs and finds out that they aren’t aliens at all….but human survivors.
I definitely recommend seeing this movie on the biggest screen you can. I saw it on a 5-story tall IMAX screen and everything just looked a hundred times more amazing than it would on a regular screen or especially on a tiny TV screen. The visuals are fantastic, with plenty of wide shots of the beautiful yet desolate post-apocalyptic earth landscapes and really neat, sleek futuristic gadgets. The music is also really amazing (lots of synthesizer, electronic drums, etc.) and adds to tense moments, revs the story along, and makes for just a really aesthetically pleasing experience to the whole look and feel of the film.
Cruise and Riseborough’s performances were the ones that stuck out to me. Jack Harper is pretty much a role made for Cruise and Riseborough was wonderful as well. Olga Kurylenko was just okay to me…her character just seemed a little two-dimensional and although she was very nice to look at, it was hard to be convinced of her role, which could have just been the way her character was written and not due to her acting abilities. I was also disappointed that Morgan Freeman’s role was so small. I felt like he could have added a lot more if he just had more of an appearance in the film. Those small details weren’t enough to spoil the whole film though, and I found myself engaged in the story for the whole two hours. This was definitely a film that gave you plot twist…after plot twist…after plot twist but it was really interesting and kept me thinking about it hours after I left the theater. I’ve read about a lot of critics saying that the story is predictable and been done before, and although I can see the similarities between other science fiction films, it doesn’t make the concepts any less interesting to me.
This film reminded me that I can actually really get into sci-fi and was a unique twist to the whole “aliens invading earth” plot line. It was definitely a movie meant to be experienced in theaters though and just won’t be the same seeing it on a television screen, so I suggest seeing it on the big screen for sure.