Reviews, Science Fiction

Interstellar

Interstellar

Copyright © 2014 by Paramount Pictures

Story
Food is scarce and Earth has become inhabitable due to its drastic climate change. Cooper (Matthew McConaughey) and his daughter, Murphy (Mackenzie Foy) uncover the location to a secret NASA installation headed by Professor Brand (Michael Caine). Brand discloses the motive of this mission hoping for Cooper’s participation in piloting the ‘Endurance’ along with team mates, Amelia (Anne Hathaway), Romilly (David Gyasi), Doyle (Wes Bentley) and automatons, TARS (Bill Irwin) and CASE (Josh Stewart). They are tasked to retrieve data from three planets which are possibly suitable for mankind’s survival. The teams of Miller, Edmunds and Mann have been deployed through a wormhole and ‘Endurance’ makes its first visit on planet Miller. A costly mishap occurs and the team has only enough fuel for one more planet should they choose to return home. As time passes, the adult Murphy (Jessica Chastain) works tirelessly with Brand for a solution in transporting the rest of humanity away from Earth’s continued deterioration via gravity instead of rocket launchers.

Review
Acclaimed director, screenwriter and producer, Christopher Nolan who single-handedly reinvented the screen adaptations for comic books (‘The Dark Knight’ trilogy – a pinnacle with the second part garnering a posthumous Oscar for a scene-stealing Heath Ledger, the only superhero movie to produce a win in the acting category and is the most nominated in its genre, previously held by ‘Dick Tracy’) and developing mind-bending thrillers such as ‘Memento’, ‘The Prestige’ and ‘Inception’ (an exceptionally original concept years in the making) has done it again.

‘Inception’ took the fundamentals of a great heist film and ornamented it with the moralities of corporate espionage from the subconscious mind via shared dreaming in the guise of a summer blockbuster made more memorable by the breathtakingly poetic action. Watching Joseph Gordon-Levitt fending off highly trained subliminal projections in a revolving room is still a tough act for many to beat. In his latest, Nolan’s fascination for the sciences will assuredly elicit an upsurge of strong feelings.

You may be at odds on the plausibility of its outcome and it could leave you with even more unanswered questions than practical answers for its overarching quest about the unknown but there is no denying of Nolan’s profundity stamped all over the saga. The philosophical context hidden in the human drama becomes relatable (though quite a handful) as actual scientific terminology and logic are used as the basis for the elaborate plot supported by theoretical physicist and executive producer, Kip Thorne.

Bolstered by a bravura showing from McConaughey and is co-piloted efficiently through Hathaway’s piercing glances of a woman equally as conflicted as the father of two, the real star of the show undoubtedly belongs to Cooper’s brilliant and resourceful progeny, Murphy who is adorably introduced by Foy, tenaciously carried on in Chastain’s astounding depth and the twilight of her life comes full circle in Ellen Burstyn’s brief but loving interpretation.

If the technicality could prove disconcerting, Nolan is the man to deliver spectacular yet engrossing action just as proceedings seemed to be meandering. Whether it is a gargantuan tidal wave threatening the astronauts’ mission or Cooper pursuing a disoriented shuttle, they are never short on being awesome. ‘Gravity’ may have struck box office and Oscar gold, ‘Interstellar’ will survive the test of time as a worthier companion to ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ (pay attention for those references). Whatever can happen, will happen.

Rating
Entirety: A
Acting: A
Plot: A-

Rated PG-13 for some intense perilous action and brief strong language

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Reviews, Science Fiction

Guardians of the Galaxy

Guardians of the Galaxy

Copyright © 2014 by Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

Story
After his mother’s death, Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) is abducted into space by the Ravagers and nurtured to be one of them. 26 years later, Quill steals an orb from Morag and tries to sell it on Xandar but is arrested by the Nova Corps when a three-way fight ensues involving Quill, Gamora (Zoe Saldana) and mercenaries Rocket (Bradley Cooper) alongside partner Groot (Vin Diesel). Learning of its deadly content, Gamora convinces the rest that the orb should best be sold to Taneleer Tivan (Benicio del Toro) to prevent it from falling into the hands of Ronan the Accuser (Lee Pace) who has set his sights on destroying the Xandarians.

Review
What a way to jolt some life back into the box office after seven consecutive weeks of declining profits as compared to the same period in 2013. No surprise there that the biggest hits of the year have been contributed from Marvel Mania; all three properties prior average a gross of more than $700 million each worldwide but the ‘X-Men’ and ‘Spider-Man’ series are not fully owned by Marvel and the quality can be slightly erratic (the semi reboots for Professor X and co are applauded to thundering effect for crafting incredibly meticulous ensemble pieces while our web slinger’s revived fandom has been met with less enthusiasm).

One thing is for certain, if Pixar is synonymous to quality film making in the world of animation (though their record is tainted by anthropomorphic cars) then Marvel Studios is the equivalent to crowd-pleasing fantasy action from the superhero genre. It has already succeeded with the intelligently scripted ‘The Winter Soldier’ and now caps off via a new franchise-making gamble to a record-breaking opener for the month of August. Take that skeptics for ever doubting the company’s future line up! Looks like upcoming adaptations in Phase Three i.e. ‘Ant-Man’ and ‘Doctor Strange’ are in good hands.

How did ‘Guardians’ silenced the cynics and win by such a huge margin? You will have to thank James Gunn for that. Just like the previous crop of unexpected directors who did good (Jon Favreau, Kenneth Branagh and Joe Johnston), Gunn’s knack for juggling the fairly large cast, diverse cultural practices and political establishment set to some of the most scenic locales ever being put on celluloid is held together by a zippy script resulting in a well-oiled space romp which evokes memories from the original ‘Star Wars’, ‘Back to the Future’ and ‘Flash Gordon’ classics.

Hard to believe that this is the same guy who wrote the live action ‘Scooby-Doo’ travesty in the early 2000s. There is no sign of a novice here, only a confident and buoyant auteur at work. His inclusion of a Walkman (relic by today’s standards) to drive the plot forward is moving, funny and humanises the unearthly premise. The last time a rock legend that was featured so prominently in a movie was Elvis Presley in ‘Lilo & Stitch’. In this action comedy, a chockfull of timeless songs in the 1970s and 1980s vocalised by Blue Swede, David Bowie, The Jackson 5 and Marvin Gaye are used for added dimension to reveal Quill’s unpolished but no less heroic ‘a-hole’, as coined by a Nova Corps officer.

Coming off from the mega-loved ‘The Lego Movie’, Pratt is unassuming and his guy-next-door appeal easily outweighs Quill’s brash and conniving side. While Ronan’s motivations could have benefitted with edgier writing, Pace at least looks the part and is totally unrecognisable as a vengeful Kree. A feat not to be dismissed lightly when the competition is not even human. Diesel and Cooper emerge as the show’s zaniest pairing since…uh Matthew Lillard and Neil Fanning took on the roles of Shaggy Rogers and Scooby-Doo respectively (not everything in it was a disaster).

Though the talking tree only utters the now infamous ‘I am Groot’ line, what makes him so endearing is Diesel’s ability to distinguish each line tonally through his one-of-a-kind instrument while Cooper seems to be just relishing the opportunity of voicing a wise-cracking raccoon. If you cannot get enough of these bounty hunters, be sure to stay until the very end for a special appearance of another cult ‘favourite’ who made his big screen debut in 1986. Oh yeah, DC Comics, be kind of afraid, the lords of the stars have got us hooked on a feeling and it is a nice one to be in. Oversaturation? I think not. I am already gearing up for next year’s ‘Age of Ultron’.

Rating
Entirety: A
Acting: A
Plot: A-

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, and for some language

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Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

Copyright © 2014 by 20th Century Fox

Story
It has been ten years since the spread of the ALZ-113 virus wiped out the majority of human life form, leaving the intelligently enhanced ape community to live in the Muir Woods led by Caesar (Andy Serkis). Their habitat is discovered by a group of humans who are immune to the virus. Malcolm (Jason Clarke), the group’s leader explains to Caesar about their need for long-term power to sustain the city which they are currently dwelling. A hydroelectric dam that is situated in the apes’ territory is the key to their survival. The humans are allowed to repair the dam but Koba (Toby Kebbell), Caesar’s second in command fears a forthcoming assault from their temporary visitors and launches an offensive strike first, culminating to a war that will define who is the stronger species.

Review
Now this is what I am talking about! A blockbuster with brains and plenty of brawn to boot. After Tim Burton’s 2001 remake underperformed due to an uneven tone and did not offer anything new, it appears that hope for any future sequels seems unlikely. Hooray for Fox; it took a chance on Rick Jaffa’s original idea to incorporate into its existing canon and rebooted this fading franchise with the extremely enjoyable and thought-provoking ‘Rise’. One of the surprising breakout hits of summer 2011 and further sealing Serkis’ career as the go-to guy for motion capture performance.

Already immortalising two other unforgettable screen presence i.e. Gollum and King Kong, Serkis can proudly include Caesar as his finest accomplishment thus far. More heroic than the mighty ape and less tragic than the wretched one, ‘Rise’ gives us a glimpse to his rise as champion for his less privilege simian friends. In this excellent follow up, the leader is seen as authoritarian but never forsakes the peace he so tightly clings on for his colony after a decade of uniting and managing a growing population of vastly evolved primates.

The arrival of Malcolm and the other human survivors threaten to tip the scale; the distrust on either side ranges from the diplomatic to the noticeably hostile. Serkis’ conviction derives directly from the strength of his eyes. Every word uttered and action taken are believably understated with hints of supremacy to keep his followers in check. Like an untreated wound, the disagreements between Caesar and Koba are left to fester and the toxicity comes at a costly price. The brutality of the two warriors is unflinchingly disturbing that filtering should be exercise appropriately.

Caution to those who are easily irked by graphic violence, it could be a little too hot for some to handle in the final act of the film where an all-out war is orchestrated by Koba against the humans while Caesar is simultaneously trying to regain control over the coup that has severely fractured his monarchy. The disfigured bonobo is driven mad for his hatred towards men and Kebbell’s gruff and unpolished mannerisms fit Koba to a tee. The human players are also game with their limited token roles, most notably Clarke who has been raking in an impressive list of movies e.g. ‘Rabbit-Proof Fence’, ‘Public Enemies’ and ‘Zero Dark Thirty’.

Taking over from James Franco as the kindly patriarch to his motley crew, Clarke is your everyman who is put in an extraordinary position by an uneven level playing field. In contrast to his compassionate nature, we are pummeled with the fact that people like Dreyfus (Gary Oldman) and Carver (Kirk Acevedo) will always exist to purge any chance for peace. Only difference here is that we are not pandered into rooting for a particular side but rather for the characters from both sides who have worked so hard to prevent the dawning of such fate.

Rating
Entirety: A
Acting: A
Plot: A

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi violence and action, and brief strong language

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Edge of Tomorrow

Edge of Tomorrow

Copyright © 2014 by Warner Bros. Pictures

Story
The world is invaded by aliens known as the Mimics and the United Defense Forces (UDF) have devised a plan for an all-out attack, reminiscent of the operation in Normandy Beach. Major William Cage (Tom Cruise) has been requested to join in the combat at the beaches of France to which he strongly objects, indicating his limited exposure in the battlefield. He is arrested for blackmailing his superior, General Brigham (Brendan Gleeson) and awakens at a forward operating base in Heathrow Airport. He is killed almost immediately after the drop-off but not before destroying an ‘Alpha’ Mimic. The Mimic’s blood infused with his enables him to relive the same day over and over again. With each day on a loop, he trains to become stronger and more tactical with the aid of Sergeant Rita Vrataski (Emily Blunt). Having the upper-hand, they join forces to end the source of the aliens’ dominance.

Review
At the height of his popularity, Cruise was one of the most powerful and influential men in Hollywood, headlining countless hits from drama (Jerry Maguire), thriller (The Firm), action (Mission: Impossible), science fiction (War of the Worlds) to supporting turns in comedy (Tropic Thunder) and even musical (Rock of Ages). Yup, you read right. He is quite a crooner. True, the film tanked at the box office but his showstopping performance raised its overall lackluster and slightly indecisive direction. Basically, he can do no wrong in any given role he embarks on.

It is unfortunate then that his career suffered a setback to public scrutiny and is no longer the golden boy he once was. His projects ever since the debacle have still been entertaining but diminishing returns for his more original entries are visibly obvious in the local box office. His international appeal remains unfazed though, which is why riskier ventures such as ‘Valkyrie’, ‘Knight and Day’ and ‘Jack Reacher’ are considered commercial successes. He seemed to be on a comeback trail through last year’s ‘Oblivion’ but the lukewarm reception from critics and audiences alike indicated his fellow Americans still needed some convincing.

Not too much convincing I hope. Based on the Japanese novel ‘All You Need Is Kill’, this big budget gamble has Cruise back in top form through a visually stunning and intelligently written piece of fiction. It is in the league of his other sci-fi classic, ‘Minority Report’ where Steven Spielberg’s gem of a movie offered the same thrill, suspense and wit to keep one fixated until the end. Too bad the latest actioner is coming off from a divisively split predecessor. The anticipation for yet another flick of this kind is significantly lower this time, what with other well-liked alternatives still making their rounds.

Cruise’s body of work is testament to his longevity in the business and never ceases to amaze with his versatility. Playing against type, Cage’s act of cowardice is at first alarming but through his newfound invincibility, he redeems his heroism in a nail-biting finale. The weight is ably shared with Blunt, a no-nonsense militant who also possessed the Mimic’s gift once is a perfect foil to Cruise’s bureaucrat. Her tough girl facade comes across fluidly but never abandoning the vulnerability within that hard exterior. For the identical deaths played out differently with each new action, kudos to Doug Liman for incorporating lots of humour to balance the woeful premise.

To realistically convey the struggling Cage ascend from zero to hero, Liman has structured his narrative partially like a video game. The use of quick cuts and resuming right after where Cage ‘died’ previously keep the mood light and do not bog down its repetitive nature. The script’s subtleties to character development also add complexity on the major’s countless roadblocks in ensuring the war is won over the Mimics. As the tagline goes, ‘Live. Die. Repeat’, this is unquestionably one worth revisiting and waking up to a time loop.

Rating
Entirety: A
Acting: A-
Plot: A

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of sci-fi action and violence, language and brief suggestive material

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Godzilla

Godzilla

Copyright © 2014 by Warner Bros. Pictures

Story
Scientists Dr Ishiro Serizawa (Ken Watanabe) and Dr Vivienne Graham (Sally Hawkins) from Project Monarch have been appointed to study the origins of a mysterious gigantic carcass in a ruined Philippines mine while in Japan, unprecedented seismic activity is recorded in the Janjira nuclear plant where Joe (Bryan Cranston) and Sandra Brody (Juliette Binoche) work. Sandra and a team of technicians are sent into the reactor to inspect when a tremor occurs and causes a malfunction. The entire team perishes and the plant is destroyed. Suspecting of a cover up, Joe continues to probe for answers in the next 15 years. Now in the U.S. Navy as a bomb disposal officer, Ford Brody (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) reunites with his estranged father to attain the truth on the actual source of the lethal circumstances in the Janjira plant and its connection to the research in Philippines. These MUTOs (Massive Unidentified Terrestrial Organism) are roaming Earth that will threaten the survival of the human race. Only the arrival of Godzilla whose existence has been kept under wraps by Monarch appears to be the only hope for man to survive a war between monsters.

Review
Hail to the return of the Japanese legend since its inception into pop culture in the 1950s. The world has been waiting with bated breath for a revival of ginormous proportions after the less-than-stellar performance of Roland Emmerich’s over-the-top cheese fest. Emmerich who just scored an explosive hit with ‘Independence Day’ thought that lightning could strike twice through cartoonish and cliché-ridden characters that spurt fancy one-liners. Well, if you are Michael Bay, you could get away with it but hey, even he had that dud of a movie called ‘Pearl Harbor’.

Ensuring the same mistakes do not happen in this edition, the film makers do get it right with the human drama and Gojira is made a saviour to mankind rather than as the cause to all hell breaks loose. It is refreshing to note on Legendary Pictures’ decision to tackle such projects without compromising on the pictures’ artistic qualities. The first to test the waters began in last year’s equally entertaining ‘Pacific Rim’, a formula undeniably replicated to good use, but not essentially better.

Like its other creature feature, ‘Godzilla’ employs an array of international talent and the ensemble does a fine job of maintaining realism amidst surreal circumstances. The human personalities are surprisingly downplayed to a point of being almost bland. The main protagonists’ ongoing look for concern and nothing else does wear thin after a while. Why bother with a group of accomplished actors when they do not elevate the stakes and intensity? Quite a pity as the quiet strength displayed from Watanabe and Elizabeth Olsen could have been fleshed out further for a greater effect.

Or everyone else for that matter. The best of the lot, Cranston unfortunately leaves way too soon and passes the torch to Taylor-Johnson whose performance can rival that of Keanu Reeves. At least, Reeves’ charm offsets his inadequacies. Of course, the main reason we are even here is to see a big monster battle it out with other monstrosities, WWE style. It does not disappoint when Gojira emerges from the depths of the ocean to save the day (clearly ‘Jaws’ was an inspiration to the watery tribute on both accounts).

Fresh from helming ‘Monsters’, hats off to Gareth Edwards for carefully selecting the right earthy shades to illustrate the devastating condition and the script’s dreadfully serious tone (seriously, movies of this magnitude should just learn to chill). However, props also go to the research on its rich mythology to produce a meticulously written script with enough twists and turns to please even the most diehard of fans. If only the humans are as enthralling as our antihero with the roar. A missed opportunity to be great rather than merely good. Nonetheless, this attempt is still a significant improvement and there is hope for a sequel to do just that.

Rating
Entirety: B+
Acting: B
Plot: A-

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of destruction, mayhem and creature violence

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Gravity

Gravity

Copyright © 2013 by Warner Bros. Pictures

Story
Dr Ryan Stone (Sandra Bullock), a medical engineer on her maiden space mission in the Shuttle Explorer along with her crew are charged with the maintenance of the Hubble Space Telescope when they receive distressing news from Mission Control in Houston that a cloud of space debris is heading towards their direction. It is a reaction caused from a Russian missile strike on an unused satellite. They attempt to abort the mission but the debris comes hurtling in killing Stone’s entire team except Matt Kowalski (George Clooney) who manages to retrieve Stone after she is separated from the ship. Together, they will need to devise a plan to safely return to Earth.

Review
Here is a description to ‘Gravity’ in a word again; Astounding! The universal praises that have been piling by critics and audiences alike are certainly justified by what yours truly have witnessed personally. Since its release, it has always been the frontrunner for consideration in all major film awards. Come awards season, it has already won several of them for its maestro, Alfonso Cuarón and is a main contender in the upcoming British Academy Film Awards and Academy Awards. I do hope that Cuarón continues to dominate his reign in the ‘Best Director’ category as how pundits would like to put it – it is his year.

He rose to critical acclaim with his interpretation of ‘Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban’ (which many still considers as the best in the series) and he followed it with indie darling ‘Children of Men’, a political thriller set in the distant future, starring Clive Owen. In his latest offering, he fuses intimate storytelling with big budget spectacle. The end result? A marvel not seen since ‘Avatar’ came charging in all its blue glory. Going in without knowing what to expect exactly, I had thought it will spend most of its screen time exploring ways for Stone to return to Earth safely after her space mission had gone awry (it still does precisely that).

The difference though is how Cuarón takes us on this thrill ride that never slips into tedium. From the film’s opening, the magnificence of Earth as seen from the eyes of our space crew is so realistically integrated, it draws the viewers in immediately, experiencing every emotion firsthand. Not long after the obligatory introduction of our cast and their mission, the film jumps right into the action with its first debris hit (it is devastating but the more spectacular one comes later in the middle of this tale of survival).

Clocking in at 90 minutes, the story zips along swiftly and by the time it is over, you would wish that our protagonist is still trapped in her shuttle. It definitely shows in the final cut that Cuarón’s vision has not been tampered with as funding, writing and editing duties belong to him also besides assuming the director’s position. The premise certainly brings ‘Cast Away’ to mind but like the Oscar nominee, it is the character details and our lone survivor’s motivations to live sprinkled throughout intelligently which provide ‘Gravity’ with plenty of gravitas.

Considering it is Bullock’s best performance since her breakthrough in ‘Speed’, it is an interesting piece of trivia to note that she was only selected due to scheduling conflicts which prevented Angelina Jolie and Natalie Portman from accepting the role. I have no doubt any of these fine actresses will step up to the challenge as how Bullock did, but her second Oscar nomination for ‘Best Actress’ in a leading role is well deserved. She completely disappears into the character and it is a side of her rarely seen on screen. She tapped into this vulnerability in ‘The Blind Side’ and ‘Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close’ but the range showcased here is amplified exponentially. Her funny self is still there but it is challenges like these actors seek to redefine themselves professionally and artistically.

It may be a bit part for Clooney yet Kowalski is extremely significant to Stone’s survival. His vast experience over the years gives credibility to handle such an explosive crisis. Interestingly, it is his cool and suave persona that provides most of the lighter moments in an otherwise very bleak situation. Understandably Robert Downey, Jr. was the original choice, nonetheless Clooney’s charm and banter with Bullock are more than enough to power through his brief appearance.

For the action and sci-fi enthusiasts, ‘Gravity’ is never short in awesome effects as well. The meticulous attention to realistically generate such a massive catastrophe in space has to be seen to be believed. Clearly, hours of research has been put into ensuring its technicality is down to a tee. While that is vital to up its e-value, ultimately, it is the human drama that matters most once you strip it down to the movie’s core. It would not be defying gravitational box office slides if it had been done any other way.

Rating
Entirety: A
Acting: A+
Plot: A

Rated PG-13 for intense perilous sequences, some disturbing images and brief strong language

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Elysium

Elysium

Copyright © 2013 by TriStar Pictures

Story
Max Da Costa (Matt Damon), an orphan who lives on over populated and polluted Earth desires to one day be privileged enough to reside on a luxurious space station known as Elysium where the citizens there live in comfort, safety and disease free. Now, a parolee from his former days as a car thief, he works at an assembly line in one of the robotics factories of Armadyne Corp., the company that supplies all of Elysium’s basic needs. After suffering from a high dose of radiation during a work related accident, he is unfairly dismissed by the manufacturer’s CEO, John Carlyle (William Fichtner). With only five days left to live, he concocts a plan with notorious smuggler and hacker Spider (Wagner Moura) in exchange for a trip up to Elysium to cure himself with the medical devices called the Med-Bays.

Review
After the huge critical and commercial success of his sleeper hit, District 9, expectations for Neill Blomkamp’s next venture has gone through the roof. With a bigger budget allocated (still average by today’s standards), the finished product is slicker and grander in scope. Attracting two Oscar winners to round up the cast’s eclectic mix help in conveying this politically charged sci-fi actioner. It is interesting to note that Damon was not Blomkamp’s first or even second choice to play the male lead (rapper Eminem had been offered previously but could not agree to the filming location) as I thought he slipped into his role so effortlessly. To look the part, he even employed an intensive workout regimen of four hours a day.

Already a veteran for appearing in some of the best action-oriented movies of our time i.e. ‘The Bourne’ trilogy, ‘The Departed and ‘Saving Private Ryan’, Damon’s cool and charming disposition is in fine form here, bringing an immediate likeability to his wise-cracking screen persona reminiscent of his character in ‘The Adjustment Bureau’. He transitions from being your regular Joe to full fledge messiah with believability via his subtle nuances. The sacrifice he makes at the end is heartbreaking but necessary. While Damon downplays his character’s significance, his co-stars, on the other hand, Jodie Foster and Sharlto Copley relish every minute of their time playing menacing and deranged with such aplomb.

Foster, still luminous as ever shines in her slightly under developed role as Secretary of Defense Jessica Delacourt. Her decisions are questionable and extreme methods do not go well with the members of the Cabinet. It could be a deliberate attempt to simply mold her as a heartless and conniving baddie but if more exposition had been included, she would have even made Meryl Streep’s steely Margaret Thatcher pale in comparison to her ruthlessness. In Copley’s case, he continues to surprise with his choice selection. He has progressed from being the accidental hero to unpredictable teammate and now, an all-out psychopath. Being the show’s scene stealer, he is not constrained to restrain but is still able to retain a certain degree of normalcy.

The underlying theme in Blomkamp’s sophomore effort is still very much similar to his first. His fascination with human rights and equality are the driving forces to the film’s central plot. Because of the differences in stature, the wealthy get to live forever and the poor unfortunately do not get to reap the same benefits. With such realism permeating in the movie’s every pore, it is no wonder that Blomkamp still opted to go for hand-held shots in the action sequences. While it is an artistic choice, I do hope he will experiment with other styles in future. Aside from some minor nitpicking, ‘Elysium’ is yet another intelligent piece of filmmaking. It may not scale the heights of his other masterpiece but its topicality will provide with lots of food for thought long after the credits have rolled.

Rating
Entirety: A-
Acting: A
Plot: A

Rated R for strong bloody violence and language throughout

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