Saturday, June 7, 2014

Edge of Tomorrow 3D

Plot: Aliens have invaded, and Major Cage (Tom Cruise) gets sent to the front line because he pissed off the General. He accidentally captures an alien technology to control time so that every time he dies, he gets sent back to the beginning of that day. He plots with war hero Rita Vrataski (Emily Blunt) to learn from his experiences in combat, and gradually turn the tables on the aliens. [imdb]    [photos]

Review: Edge of Time has a clever plot and Tom Cruise's performance is strong as he re-lives many similar combat scenes, but knowing more each time: a lot of good facial & voice acting. Cruise undergoes a personality change from privileged softy to tough-guy somewhere in the middle. Cruise is fun to watch as a cocky, tough guy in the comic relief segments. 

Emily Blunt plays a very tough warrior woman. She is more someone to respect and admire rather than a believable character -- obviously the coolest character in the movie. In keeping with a long tradition of female sci-fi heroes, Rita is like a male character in a female body; not like recent women heroes from young adult fiction like Hunger Games, Divergent or even X-Men. Rita doesn't talk about her past just like male tough guys; in contrast Marvel Comics heroes never stop talking about their pasts.

The chemistry between Cruise and Blunt is the strongest part of the movie. The second best is the puzzle solving as they work their way to alien's vulnerability.  

The big downer was the dreariness and hopelessness of the battle scenes though the vast middle of the movie. Perhaps it needed to be dreary to have something to contrast the end with, but I never thought the movie was fun to watch. It seemed like every one, but Rita hated Cage, and the rest of the time Cage was getting battered by practice robots or getting killed by real aliens. The comic relief parts were not enough to lighten the mood. 

The drum-heavy sound track Christophe Becke was good. The special effects were solid. I did not like aliens who just seems to roar. They moved fast, but were otherwise not very interesting. The scenery was always dreary, battle field images. There were no cool visuals.

Cast: Tom Cruise, Emily Blunt

Directed by: Doug Liman

Based on the novel in Japanese by: Hiroshi Sakurazaka

Rating: 2.5 stars: Recommended, but it felt a little hollow to me. My wife liked it a lot more.

More: It is interesting to think about whether women could be heroic warriors if they had those robotically-assisted suits in real life. It seems Lockheed Martin has developed one.