Director: Joseph Kosinski
Writer: Karl Gajdusek, Michael Arndt
Starring: Tom Cruise, Morgan Freeman, Olga Kurylenko
Plot: After a war with invaders from another planet, Earth is uninhabitable. A clean up crew is left behind to oversee the removal of natural resources before the remaining humans head off to their new home called on a colony called Titan.
Rate It: (0 -3 guys)
So what did you think?
Adam – I enjoyed the look of the film quite a bit. The sets and gizmos all looked top notch. Similarly, there was plenty of action to keep folks entertained. On the downside this film was extremely derivative and you could see the twists and turns coming from a mile away. An entertaining Sci-Fi film for folks that don’t like to think to much that probably would not stand up to repeat viewings very well.
Scotty - This film is visually stunning but utterly boring. Oblivion had all the bells and whistles of a sci-fi extravaganza but the story and characters were forgettable. I continue to struggle with Tom Cruise and his way of reenacting past characters for future roles and the story lacked anything new, not a terrible film but certainly not memorable.
Griff – Well visually it was pretty good but that can only take you just so far. Eventually you are going to have to rely on some story and that is where things fall apart. The plot, the characters, the twists, all of it has been done before in other movies. It all plays out like a bad pilot for some new series on ABC this fall.
Any thoughts before you saw the movie?
Adam – I was in the mood for a little Tom Cruise so why not check this out. Besides there was nothing else at the theater worth watching.
Scotty -I was not looking forward to this one. When Morgan Freeman was playing his best Morpheus in the trailer I knew I could be in for a trip to the movies that could be terrible.
Griff – This looked real bad and it’s placement before the summer blockbusters tells me that the studios didn’t think much of it either.
Did you think this movie was fresh and/or innovative?
Adam – Not in the least bit. The script cobbled together about ten different Sci-Fi film plots and video games then regurgitated them up on the screen. If it was not for the stunning visuals I would have dinged this film even more than I did.
Scotty - Worst innovation ever, take Top Gun, The Matrix, and Wall-e, and Total Recall, mix them all up and Oblivion happens.
Griff – Take the best elements (and some bad elements as well) of a dozen or so other better sci-fi movies. Put them in the cup, shake them up, and yell “Yahtzee!” cause you just made a movie.
Did you think the script was well written?
Adam – If you had never seen a Sci-Fi film before I could see where you might think the script was well done.
Scotty – The script was poor and the first hour was slow. Oblivion struggled to become its’ own movie as it rips and tears from all other films and finds its’ identity with about a half hour left.
Griff - It’s not the worst thing in the world but it is pretty fare from great as well. This is the plain white toast of sci-fi movies. It is going to keep you going but nobody is excited to be eating it.
Was there a performance you really liked or really hated?
Adam – Morgan Freeman looks good in cape. I also enjoyed the brief screen time that Nikolaj Coster-Waldau had. I am turning into a big fan of the King Slayer.
Scotty -I did not like or hate anyone, I thought they all were just okay.
Griff - It was a real shame to see Nikolaj Coster Waldau in this movie and have him have such a small role. I think having him in the lead role would have been a better choice and made for a more interesting movie. Morgan Freeman seemed like he was sleeping walking through this movie. Andrea Riseborough had a nice little performance and was probably the most interesting character. Also, I would like to mention that Olga Kurylenko is very attractive.
Do you remember a song from the film?
Adam – Yes, but not in a good way. Can we all agree to never have that Procol Harum tune Whiter Shade of Pale in any film for the rest of eternity? Check out this site devoted to documenting just such occurrences http://procolharum.com/phfilms.htm
Scotty -“Ramble On” by Led Zeppelin
Griff - I believe they played some Zeppelin
What was your favorite line?
Adam – “Are you an effective team?”
Scotty – “I am Jack Harper. And I am home.”
Griff – “Are you an effective team?”
What would have made this a better movie?
Adam - I would have rather seen at least a third of this film devoted to struggle of the “Scavs” More screen time for Freeman and Coster-Waldau would have made for a much more interesting film.
Scotty – Oblivion needed to find itself earlier in the film, I honestly could not wait for the finale and when it finally came I enjoyed the spectacle.
Griff - This movie was just plain generic from start to finish. I know it’s difficult not to borrow from other ideas but everything here is rehashed tired old plots. It makes for a watchable but not overly enjoyable film.
Is it worth seeing in the theater? Or could you have waited for the DVD/Stream?
Adam - Save your cash, nothing special here that you can’t watch at home on your couch in a few months.
Scotty -If you have to see it see it in IMAX or the theater. The special effects are truly the only thing worth watching.
Griff – Wait for this to show up on TNT or HBO but don’t waste your hard earned money on it.
What other movies would you recommend if someone enjoyed this film?
Adam – Hmm lets see what films does this Oblivion rip off? You can see the films that inspired the script by watching Wall-E, La Jette, Planet of the Apes, and Alien, I could probably think of a few more films to add to this list as well. Why not play some Fallout when you finish watching those film to see some of the visual inspirations in video game form.
Scotty – The Matrix, 2001 Space Odyssey, Wall-E, to be honest if you enjoyed this sci-fi film you would probably like any sci-fi film.
Griff - I am going to throw out a couple of odd sci-fi choices here. A couple of picks off the beaten path. (Both of which I have reviewed in the past…) Colossus: The Forbin Project (1970) – Way ahead of it’s time and War Games pretty much stole directly from this movie and then Silent Running (1972) with the exceptional character actor Bruce Dern. This one is a bit of slow mover but with amazing visuals and great story.
Any final thoughts on this movie?
Adam – While this film is not terrible it is certainly not excellent either. At best this is a mildly interesting film with above average visuals. A better title for this cinematic doppelganger would have been “Obvious.”
Scotty – Oblivion lacks much of what makes a movie good; the story is a total retread of really good sci-fi films, the pacing struggles, especially in the beginning, and the characters are forgettable. That being said it is visually stunning and the last half hour was enjoyable at some level. I kind of wish I could do a mind wipe after watching it, actually you do not even need a mind wipe it wipes itself from your mind and that is the problem with the film.
Griff - Oblivion is a watchable but utterly forgettable entry to the genre. This is the kind of movie you can fall asleep watching on some lazy Sunday afternoon. I don’t think anyone will walk away from this thinking it was terrible but you aren’t going to recommend it at the water cooler either.