Movie Review: Oblivion

I’ve been on a Tom Cruise kick lately – and 2013’s ‘Oblivion’ is about as scifi as Cruise gets.

Set in the year 2077, ‘Oblivion’ features a post-war Earth where humanity is living off-world in a giant vessel and in the process of moving to a liveable planet – one of Saturn’s moons, Titan.

 

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Humanity has escaped to ‘The Tet’ and is waiting to make the trip to Titan

 

Cruise plays a cross between a soldier and a tv repair guy, Tech 49, who’s stayed behind to maintain the mechanical drones that are protecting the giant fusion generators as they suck up the last of Earth’s water in preparation for the trip to Titan.

 

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Does Tom Cruise ever not play a soldier? I can’t think of the last time I saw him in a film where he didn’t carry a gun.

 

Along with his partner, Victoria (Andrea Riseborough) they make a very ‘effective team’ and are just two weeks away from joining the others on the trip to Titan when things go awry.

 

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Riseborough gives a great performance as Cruise’s girlfriend and plays the stable, obedient partner to Cruise’s unpredictable, risk-taker.

 

Given that the film is written and directed by Joseph Kosinski, who’s famed for his computer generated imagery and computer graphics, the film has a very slick, high-tech feel.

 

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Kosinski originally sold the film rights for his unpublished graphic novel ‘Oblivion’ to Disney – who later had to relinquish the rights because they couldn’t get below a PG-A rating.

 

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Okay, so there’s usually a gun in Tom Cruise films. But there’s also usually a motorbike, and ‘Oblivion’ is no exception. Leads me to wonder how much influence Cruise is having on his movies.

 

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Kosinski is better known for CGI-related TV commercials, but made his big screen film debut in 2010 with ‘Tron: Legacy’ (sequel to the original ‘Tron’).

 

With a great soundtrack and solid supporting cast in Morgan Freeman, Melissa Leo and Olga Kurylenko, this film is visually driven and the slower narrative will frustrate those who prefer a faster-paced action film.

 

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Morgan Freeman gives a credible performance despite his somewhat ridiculous costume. Extra kudos to him for wearing his sunglasses. All the time. Does he even have eyes…?

 

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Melissa Leo is seriously creepy as the ever-present, ever-watching Mission Commander.

 

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Olga Kurylenko is true to the feel of the film – visually stunning but a little light on substance and narrative.

 

I enjoyed this film and recommend it to scifi lovers who love big stunning visuals and don’t mind a slower pace. And of course, Tom Cruise fans.

 

You can check out the official trailer here:

 

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