Review: Oblivion


Director:Joseph Kosinski

Cast:Tom Cruise, Olga Kurylenko, Morgan Freeman, Andrew Riseborough

Running Time:125.00


In the year 2077, Earth has been abandoned, left empty after a war with aliens.  Jack Harper works as a security repairman, fixing machines and battling those who continue to fight for their kind.  After an unusual crash results in the saving of a lone survivor, Jack's concept of reality is put into question as he begins to connect the dots, forcing him to confront his memory and shape the future of the human race.

Tom Cruise pulls from past projects in his call of duty as Earth hero Jack Harper.  Not only do we see constant reminders of past characters Ethan Hawk and Jack Reacher, but the story itself rarely ventures far from the usual, forcing audiences to accept a heavy dosage of flaws in favor of the stellar special effects that comprise nearly every scene of the film.  HIs performance, for what it is, is satisfactory.  I wouldn't commend his portrayal as anything unique or special, but he didn't distract your attention from storyline events.

Director Joseph Kosinski takes quite a while in educating his viewers of the situation.  He begins the film with a voiceover, informing everyone of the situation and explaining things as our eyes begin to process the nearly unrecognizable Earth as it lay unkempt, wrecked from an atomic war.  It is during these early stages that the story struggles most, sluggishly moving along, building up to a climax that constantly feels out of reach.  The mundane actions and distant dialogue keep viewers at bay, refusing them the ability to process information on their own, and ultimately handicapping their overall connection to the story and its rather small group of characters.

Oblivion relies heavily on its visual appeal, so it is a good thing that it delivers"”for the most part.  Several unique flares often distracted from the main story arc, and occasionally things became a little too high-tech, disallowing the story to flow smoothly, but the details associated with the project aren't anything to balk at.  The pristine colors and imaginative layout created a glimpse into something great"”I just wish the rest of the film could have been on par with the spectacle that my eyes were being treated to.

In the end, the film is a visual project whose biggest draw outweigh its many flaws.  It is far from perfect, and Cruise becomes a bit muffled in whether he is supposed to be starring as Ethan Hawk, Jack Reacher or Jack Harper.  It isn't anything close to Ghost Protocol, but Oblivion does prove to be worth experiencing on the big screen.


About Stephen Davis

Stephen Davis
I owe this hobby/career to the one and only Stephanie Peterman who, while interning at Fox, told me that I had too many opinions and irrelevant information to keep it all bottled up inside. I survived my first rated R film, Alive, at the ripe age of 8, it took me months to grasp the fact that Julia Roberts actually died at the end of Steel Magnolias, and I might be the only person alive who actually enjoyed Sorority Row…for its comedic value of course. While my friends can drink you under the table, I can outwatch you when it comes iconic, yet horrid 80s films like Adventures in Babysitting and Troop Beverly Hills. I have no shame when it comes to what I like, and if you have a problem with that, then we’ll settle it on the racquetball court. I see too many movies to actually win any film trivia contest, so don’t waste your first pick on me. My friends rent movies from my bookcase shelves, and one day I do plan to start charging. I long to live in LA, where my movie obsession will actually help me fit in, but for now I am content with my home in Austin. I prefer indies to blockbusters, Longhorns to Sooners and Halloween to Friday the 13th. I miss the classics, as well as John Ritter, and I hope to one day sit down and interview the amazing Kate Winslet.

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