Summary: On a spectacular future Earth that has evolved beyond recognition, one man’s confrontation with the past will lead him on a journey of redemption and discovery as he battles to save mankind.
Australian Cinema Release Date: 11th April, 2013
Australian DVD Release Date: TBA
Country: United States
Director: Joseph Kosinski
Screenwriter: Joseph Kosinski, Karl Gajdusek, Michael Arndt, Arvid Nelson (graphic novel)
Cast: Zoe Bell (Kara), Nickolaj Coster-Waldau (Sykes), Tom Cruise (Jack), Morgan Freeman (Beech), Olga Kurylenko (Julia), Melissa Leo (Sally), Andrea Riseborough (Victoria)
Runtime: 125 mins
Dave Griffiths’s ‘Oblivion’ Review:
There seems to be some people out there that are wanting to give ‘Oblivion’ a wide berth simply because Tom Cruise is in it. If that’s the case for you then ask yourself the following questions. Would you not go and see a film because the lead actor was Jewish? When was the last time Tom Cruise made a bad movie?
The second question is really worth pondering, because the last average film that Cruise made was ‘Knight And Day’ and even that was passable and enjoyable. And once again Cruise has chosen well with ‘Ovlivion’ being so good it also proofs that Joseph Kosinski is certainly one of the best young directors going around at the moment.
Firstly, this is going to be a review that doesn’t give away any of the major twists or turns that the film takes. Even the fact that the trailer reveals that Morgan Freeman (‘Olympus Has Fallen’, ‘The Dark Knight Rises’) is in the film is a major spoiler that I wish I could have blocked out of mind before I saw the film.
‘Oblivion’ opens on a desolate Earth, an Earth that sixty years earlier was left broken and shattered after the it was attacked by a race of aliens known as Scavs. The Scavs blew up the moon and then stormed onto Earth and resulting nuclear war left Earth devastated.
Most of humanity has been shipped off to a new location but some ‘workers’ such as the effective team of Jack (Tom Cruise – ‘Jack Reacher’, ‘Rock Of Ages’) and Victoria (Andrea Riseborough – ‘Welcome To The Punch’, ‘Disconnect’) have been left behind in a bid to follow the orders of Command, a straight-forward woman named Sally (Melissa Leo – ‘Olympus Has Fallen’, ‘A Single Shot’). Their tasks include defending the large rigs that are being used to draw up water to be used at their new home and also repairing the droids that are used to protect the rigs from the marauding Scavs.
Just as it looks like Jack and Victoria are about to get their wish and be transported to their new home the sudden appearance of Julia (Olga Kurylenko – ‘Seven Psychopaths’, TV’S ‘Magic City’), a woman that haunts Jack in his dreams and also seems to pose more questions than answers.
Apart from a well-written and slick science-fiction film ‘Oblivion’ really does reveal the talents of Joseph Kosinski, a director who with just his second film has revealed that he is already capable of delivering a film visually looks equal t anything that James Cameron or Stephen Spielberg has delivered. Kosinski’s landscape shots look like something from ‘Dune’ while his droid vs Jack dog fights look like something from ‘Star Wars’. Kosinski showed with ‘Tron Legacy’ (which was his first work as a director) that he had talent, but it is ‘Oblivion’ that shows that he is set to become of the greatest directors of our time.
As far as ‘Oblivion’s’ story goes it will really mess with any audience member. Kosinski keeps back his all his twists and turns until the moment he wants to reveal to the audience exactly what is happening. There are some he breadcrumbs enough that you get a feeling something is suss, but it is rare in this film that you are ever likely to totally predict what is going to happen next, the fact that Kosinski is a good storyteller and also a very visual director just goes to show that one day he is going to make the perfect film.
As usual Tom Cruise puts in a solid performance as he plays a character that is made interesting by the fact that the audience is left asking more questions about him than is actually answered. On paper the idea of Tom Cruise and Olga Kurylenko should sound freaky (because of their ages) but together on screen they have the perfect chemistry. Andrea Riseborough also rises to the occasion and she plays the cold (yet filled with emotion) Victoria remarkably well. This could her big breakout movie that makes the world realise just how good she is.
If you love science-fiction then you are never going to be disappointed by ‘Oblivion’. It is one of the better science fiction films to have been released over the last few years and I can’t wait to see what Joseph Kosinski chooses to do next.
Other Subculture Media Reviews of ‘Oblivion′: Check Episode #27 of our The Good The Bad The Ugly Podcast for a more in-depth review of ‘Oblivion’. Please also check Dave’s review of ‘Oblivion’ that is available on the Helium Entertainment Channel.