Firstly, let’s take a look at Tom Cruise’s last film Vanilla Sky. On the whole, it was an unutterable mess, an over-ambitious sewer of thoughts that failed to make an impression on even the most credulous of audiences. The best thing about the film was Tom Cruise, who, like always, gave a totally honest, all round credible performance. Now let’s look at Steven Spielberg’s last film A.I. It too was waterlogged with a lot of ideas and thought, but mostly a barrel of bore. Except of course, the magnificent special effects created for the film. So where to now for Cruise and Spielberg? Of course! – combine the better elements of both those films – Cruise and the awesome effects of the latter – and create the ultimate in collaborative artistry, “Minority Report.”
Based on a short story by famed Sci-Fi writer, Philip K.Dick (“Total Recall,” “Bladerunner”), “Minority Report” is as different as anything you’re likely to see this year. It’s part super sci-fi adventure, part “Fugitive,” and a lot of mystery whodunit. Add to that the elements of tension, humor, drama and comeuppance and you have what could be the best and smartest action blockbuster of the new millennium.
It’s the future (about 50 years from now) and John Anderton (Cruise) is the man pushing the buttons on one of the most revolutionary inventions of human science… Pre-Crime. There are three “precogs”, three almost human like inhabitants who can see the future, more importantly murders that will be committed. Once they see a killing they send the data to Anderton and his associate boys-in-blue and they then in turn try to stop the murder before it happens. It seems to be the perfect system. Heck, it is.
Anderton is ready to dissect the clues the precogs give him about another murder, when his face flashes upon a screen, tagging him “the murderer” of a crime. Immediately fleeing from the building certain he has been set-up, Anderton seeks out those behind the contraption to see if there isn’t a way he can prove his innocence. But before that he has to do whatever he can to evade anyone with a gun, a badge and jetpack.
To say much more about the film would be giving away it’s delicious core. It’s got so many un-guessable surprises up its sleeve that it would be a crime against the intended sector that’ll lap it up.
Where “Minority Report” succeeds is by dishing up a little bit of everything – to see no one leaves the theater disgruntled. There are helpings of science fiction marvel, there’s some interminable tension and a real human story underneath it all. The specials effects are damn impressive to boot.
Cruise is the finest he has been in a long time. He not only gets to run, jump, hide and duck…but he gets to act his a*s off, and comes across more convincing than he has in a long time. Of the supporting actors, Colin Farrell is sinister, and Samantha Morton as Agatha, the more dear of the “Pre-Cogs” are as equally blissful. But also deserving of praise if Director Steven Spielberg, he has returned to the kind of films he made back in the 80s, pleasurable roller coaster ride films – Like Indiana Jones – that satisfy from the get-go.
There will only be a small “minority” who don’t like the film – all others will be overwhelmed by just how damn good it is. Ladies and gentlemen, it’s the return of the bitchin super-dooper action blockbuster. If you enjoyed Cruise’s “Mission: Impossible,” multiply it by five!