Friday, April 19, 2013
Oblivion joins the ranks of Post Apocalyptic Movies (click for IMDB list). I feel like an expert in this well-worn Sci-fi plot, so I was surprised to go thru the list and find out I've only seen a scant few - Logan's Run, Planet of the Apes, Waterworld, The Matrix, The Road, Children of Men, I Am Legend and Zombieland. This movie, whose source material comes from a not yet released graphic novel by Writer/Director Joe Kosinski, didn't go for the cliched remnants of the Statue of Liberty to denote the fact that this was once beloved Earth, instead it went for the semi-schmaltzy Empire State Building and a Yankees baseball hat.
Synopis: Jack (Cruise) and his girlfriend/co-worker Vika (Andrea Riseborough) ("an effective team") are the only two people (or so they believe) left on Earth. They are more or less the clean up crew. If you've ever worked in theater, their role is kinda like striking the set. The run is over, the actors, audience and designers go home and it's just a few production folk left to close up the theater. In this case, after an Alien invasion took a chunk out of the moon throwing the world into chaos, the remaining inhabitants of earth packed up and went to live on one of the moons of Saturn.
There are some alien life form (Scavs) still running about making Jack and Vika's job difficult, so killer drones are used to police the area and protect Jack, and in turn Jack repairs the drones when they malfunction. Vicka works "at home" in the sleek sky tower pad monitoring the situation from her table top command station and keeping in contact with Sally, the top personnel on Earth's new home near Saturn (or so they think). Although Jack & Vicka are supposedly on a final mission to Earth, the apocalypse happened roughly 60 years prior. Which is why Jack, having never lived on the planet, finds it mystifying that he should have such strong memories of the place, particularly that of a woman on The Observation Deck of the Empire State Building.
Here's a video of her discussing acting without words and learning from Cruise and Freeman.
Speaking of the Shawshank, Driving, Olympus God-like actor:
Bottom line: That's the main theme of Oblivion - The things that make us human no matter the circumstances. First and foremost the "L" word, but also a sense of responsibility to help those in need, creature comforts like music, literature and nature, along with thinking for ourselves and asking questions, and most importantly, kicking-ass when anyone or anything threatens any of these basic humanities.
LAMB Score: 3 out of 5
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