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Oblivion predictable, but lots of s’plosions

Paul Peterson

Paul Peterson

OK, so no one is exactly hurtling or racing to Oblivion – the latest Tom Cruise action film – but it did have a decent opening weekend and was Cruise’s biggest since War of the Worlds.
I like Cruise.
He’s not exactly an actor in the tradition of people who can act. He’s an entertainer.

I liked him in Magnolia, although really he was just playing Tom Cruise confused. I may be the only person on the planet that felt sorry for Cruise during his very public divorce from Katie Holmes. My general sense of him is that he’s an entitled doofus, which might mean that I don’t invite him to the cottage for boys weekend, but did he really need to be marginalized and portrayed as near monster like? Well, probably, but I still felt sorry for him. But I digress.
Our story so far.

His character,  Jack Harper is one of the last human beings on earth in the year 2077.
If you look at the poster you see everything that’s right and wrong with this movie. He’s walking along this futuristic stylized bridge that has obviously undergone some kind of cataclysmic event, and he’s wearing some weird mix of a hazmat suit for the disco. We’re not sure what’s going on, but the bridge looks really good.
I think that’s a fair review of the film. We aren’t sure what’s going on and when we do find out, I’m pretty sure we don’t really care.

As it turns out, he has to save earth and he has to fight off alien scavengers.
Visually, all of the scenes are spectacular.
Directed by relative newcomer Joseph Kosinski, who helmed Tron Legacy,  (another marginal contribution to filmdom in my opinion); it has all the bells and whistles without worrying too much about story.
So I’m out.
Morgan Freeman stars as the rarely seen Beech. That cat could read a phone book and give you your money’s worth, but I thought his character was totally predictable.
The entire film is. It’s just so tedious.
I wanted to like Oblivion. If I didn’t need story, I probably would have.

The whole destruction of the planet is well done. We have farmed everything we could out of the planet and now there’s the final emigration to one of Saturn’s moons. I’m sure there’s some kind of metaphor or cautionary tale in there somewhere, but if they’re not going to bother with it then why should I?

Harper is a badass who has had his memory wiped but there are traces.
Ghosts of memories.
A romantic encounter.
A girl.
Oh look, here’s the lovely Victoria (Andrea Riseborough) who seems immune to the planet’s destruction so she can wear runway fashion outfits while she helps Tom battle the aliens and his tortured caring self. Also, Julia (Olga Kurylenko), making for some kind of 2077 triangle.
It’s just over two hours long which is about that much too much. Twenty less minutes might have helped but so would have a plausible story line.
Look, I know this film isn’t for me. It’s for the big noise, big screen fans in the 16-45 male demographic. My exit polling suggested them there fellers quite liked it. Lots a ‘splosions and that girl’s kinda purty.

If that’s what you’re looking for you’re going to really enjoy Oblivion. The movie and the mindset.
I’m going to be begging for these minutes back.
As always, other opinions are welcome, but wrong. That’s it for this week. The cheque’s in the mail and I’m outta here. Paul.

Filed Under: News from Everywhere ElsePaul Peterson

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  1. Jim says:

    That’s too bad. You’d think they’d have done a better job.

  2. madalena says:

    lost track of the story after you said you felt sorry for Tom lol how could you…..
    would love to actually watch one of these movies with you.. to see first hand…

  3. virginia says:

    Ditto for me.

  4. fed up says:

    I’m disappointed. I’m a sci fi fan. Was willing to overlook the presence of Tom Cruise to see this movie.(still more watchable than Mel Gibson)
    Now I guess I’ll just pass. thanks for the heads up.

  5. Lynne Carmichael says:

    well, never did have any intention of seeing the film. Grateful that it spawned this humour though


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