It’s all academic really isn’t it? I mean, what I say here, it’s all academic. Firstly I’m not some big film reviewer and secondly this is a Tom Cruise movie and you’ll go to watch it whatever I say.
Personally I think the days of Cruise being able to pull people in because of who he is are gone and I think this film goes someway to assisting in that. It’s not that Oblivion is a bad film, it’s just not great either, and it’s a far cry from previous Cruise vehicles.
What you get from writer and director Joseph Kosinski is a rip-off of pretty every other sci-fi film ever made, placed into what is actually a good premise. Perhaps one of the largest scene rips is from The Matrix; for Oblivion we get a (chronically underused) Morgan Freeman playing Morpheus, sorry Beech, and when we’re introduced to him he may as well offer Cruise the opportunity to take a different coloured pill.
If you’ve seen the trailers then you’ll be expecting something quite different to what you actually get. The trailers suggest a rip-roaring action movie, in reality the movie trudges along coming in at just over two hours long, and has a love story running throughout that actually takes the majority of the screen time.
The issue with the movie is that it’s long, unnecessarily so, other characters are badly underused, not just Freeman but Olga Kurylenko and Andrea Riseborough too. You spot the plot and any twists well before they occur yet the movie continues on unabashedly labouring the point till it thinks you’re ready for the reveal. Kosinski was the director for the Tron: Legacy movie and you can certainly see that with Oblivion.
It’s a shame because the premise of the movie, something I can’t say without giving it all away, is actually really good. It’s just badly executed. The movie just becomes a ‘switch your brain off and enjoy’ when it should have made you think and question.
For a Friday/Saturday night out it’s ok, but if you’re looking for an enjoyable film I’d personally save my money and wait for Iron Man 3, Man of Steel or Pacific Rim. If it’s sci-fi you’re after than Star Trek Into Darkness is just around the corner.