|A great cast for a mediocre film.|
Directed by Wally Pfister
Produced by Andrew A. Kosove, Broderick Johnson, Kate Cohen, Marisa Polvino, Annie Marter, David Valdes and Aaron RyderWritten by Jack Paglen
Starring Johnny Depp, Rebecca Hall, Paul Bettany, Kate Mara, Cillian Murphy and Morgan Freeman
Widely known for lensing Christopher Nolan's films, Wally Pfister makes his directorial debut with this sci-fi blockbuster. Dr. Will Caster (Depp) and his wife/science partner (Hall) are on the verge of advancing computer technology to a whole new level, making a super-computer that will be smarter than anyone ever born combined. When Caster's life is in jeopardy, they risk everything, uploading his conscious to their elaborate computer system. Man and machine become one, but it could have drastic consequences for all mankind.
Despite the talent he assembled, Pfister doesn't quite pull it off. His film is not lacking in ideas or in style, but it does not have the emotional weight that this apocalyptic tale needed. The best way to characterize it is a strange hybrid of the types of films made by M. Night Shyamalan and Christopher Nolan, which could work but doesn't. While the performances are up to par, the material fails to provide much insight into these characters and the world in which they live. In addition, some of the plot develops too quickly, though the script does have an interesting scope. The film looks great, with elaborate sets and slick cinematography. Still, the vision and makeup of the film fall flat. While not entirely without merit, it's a disappointing first outing from Pfister.
Oscar Potential: Best Production Design, Best Sound Mixing, Best Sound Editing, Best Visual Effects