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Oblivion: Movie Review

Even with "Oblivion" borrowing elements heavily from other scifi films, the film proves to be an interesting watch. Surprisingly, the film has a well-developed plot and one that feels solidly and beautifully connected. And while the turnout may not be as remarkable, as legendary or as spectacular as we expected or wanted it to be, the final product and the stunning post-apocalyptic world created by director Joseph Kosinski is well-worth the experience.

It is 2077 and the Earth and Moon as we know it are now destroyed. Sixty years earlier, an alien race invades Earth in the hopes that it could take the planet's resources. Humans prove to be resistant though and push back the alien invasion but in the process destroyed most of the planet's surface by using nukes as weapons as a last ditch effort. Unfortunately, the aliens were able to destroy the Moon as well. Humans decide to migrate to Titan, one of Saturn's moons, to restart humanity there. Former Marine commander Jack Harper (Tom Cruise) is one of the last few drone mechanics stationed on Earth. Jacks lives in an airborne tower with his colleague Victoria (Andrea Riseborough). They are task to protect the water extractors from the remaining forces of the invasion. Nearing the end of his mission, Jack rescues a female stranger, Julia (Olga Kurylenko), from a crashed spaceship. Following her arrival, he is captured by an insurgency led by the mysterious Malcolm Beech (Morgan Freeman) which will force him to question everything he knows about the invasion, its aftermath and humanity's true enemy.

If we could choose one thing that truly moved us in "Oblivion" then it definitely would be the visual effects and the world that the characters are living in. This is probably the most convincing and moving post-apocalyptic world we have seen yet in a film and one that ekes out emotions of nostalgia and sadness once you see famous landmarks and locations completely destroyed (considering these places are actually still standing in reality, then you can see how impressed we are). Additionally, the film turns out to be action-packed further enhancing the world weaved by Joseph Kosinski. The major downside for us is the story though. Surprisingly, the first half is quite interesting and mysterious and overall, it is well-developed. But the film borrows heavily from other scifi films and "Oblivion", in fact, had a tendency to insinuate clues to major plot points. You can easily surmise that this makes "Oblivion" a very predictable film if you had your fair share of scifi fiction and heavily blunts the succeeding reveals in the second half. Acting-wise, it's good enough. Tom Cruise is his usual self. Our favorite is Andrea Riseborough with her portrayal of Victoria. One that proves to be the perfect mix of mystery and mind-controlled coldness. But we do feel that what the film compensated with story, it left off with character development. Never do we really feel the plight and importance of its characters. Overall, we recommend "Oblivion" - just don't expect to experience new things when it comes to its genre.

Rating: 4 reels





Why you should watch it:
- beautifully-made, the post-apocalyptic world presented is just something to behold
- the story, while predictable and nothing new, turns out to be surprisingly well-paced and developed

Why you shouldn't watch it:
- feels eerily similar to other scifi films and yet devoid of their appeal
- more action-oriented than brains may tick off some scifi fans


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