Review: EDGE OF TOMORROW (2014) | Casey's Movie Mania | Movie Reviews, Features & Others

Friday, 23 May 2014

Review: EDGE OF TOMORROW (2014)

Review: EDGE OF TOMORROW (2014)
Tom Cruise gives a robustly entertaining performance in this familiar but fun sci-fi blockbuster.

From Bill Murray in GROUNDHOG DAY (1993) to Jake Gyllenhaal in SOURCE CODE (2011), movies about time loop is always a fun viewing experience especially if the director knows how to play around with the genre. Now it's Tom Cruise's turn, and the idea of watching him trapped in a time loop over and over again in Doug Liman's highly-anticipated sci-fi blockbuster EDGE OF TOMORROW is simply irresistible.

Adapted from the Japanese novel All You Need Is Kill (the movie's original title) by Hiroshi Sakurazaka, EDGE OF TOMORROW centres around an unfortunate military officer named Major William Cage (Tom Cruise), who is sent out on a combat mission to fight against the invading alien race somewhere in the near future. However, it doesn't take long before he gets himself killed on the battlefield. And then something weird happens: he finds himself waking up in a time loop and subsequently forced to go over the same combat over and over again. Over the course of his seemingly endless battle, he begins to develop better skills to fight against the aliens especially after he join forces with Special Forces warrior Rita Vrataski (Emily Blunt).
At nearly two hours long, Doug Liman's direction is fast-paced enough to keep you occupied. While the script (written by Christopher McQuarrie, Jez Butterworth and John-Henry Butterworth) is basically nothing more than your typical time loop movie, Liman manages to find a way to poke fun at that particular genre with some of his genuine comedy moments. This is especially evident when we get to watch the way Cage gets killed in various entertaining fashion.

Technically speaking, the special effects are seamless while the overall production design is an equally top notch.

As Major William Cage, Tom Cruise is in top form here. While fans and viewers will surely admire his magnetic charisma and physical prowess, as usual, it was the way he plays his cowardly soldier role that excels the most. Suffice to say, he's simply fun and dramatic enough that keeps you hooked to his character. Emily Blunt brings a lot of commitment in her captivating role as Rita Vrataski. Despite playing a small role, Bill Paxton manages to give a scene-stealing performance as the pain-in-the-neck Master Sergeant Farell.

The first SAVING PRIVATE RYAN-like battle where Cage is seen falling from an exploded plane and immediately caught in a middle of the chaotic war between the aliens and the soldiers; and a particularly hilarious moment where Cage attempts to escape from the military base.

In the past such as THE BOURNE IDENTITY and MR. & MRS. SMITH, Doug Liman proves himself as an accomplished visual stylist when comes to execute action sequences. However, it's kind of surprising that the action in EDGE OF TOMORROW feels as if it was edited by someone who has attention deficit disorder. In fact, it's kinda frustrating to witness the majority of the action sequences moves too fast with lots of motion blurs especially the way Dion Beebe jerks his camera.

Apart from Cruise, Blunt and Paxton, it's a shame that the rest of the cast are mostly reduced to underwhelming roles. Then there's the final third act, which feels disappointing because the way Liman chooses to end his movie with the utmost conventional or shall I say, "safe" approach. I mean for a movie that embraces such high-concept premise, I would have expected something remarkable in the finale.


Review: EDGE OF TOMORROW (2014)

EDGE OF TOMORROW isn't groundbreaking by any means but still if you get to pass through some of the movie's missteps, this is one entertaining summer movie blockbuster worth checking out for.

* This review is written courtesy from Warner Bros Malaysia IMAX 3D press screening *

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