Projections - Movie Reviews

Minority Report

Minority Report

In the highly anticipated union of two of Hollywood's most famous people, Tom Cruise and Steven Spielberg, we are given the film adaptation of the classic Phillip K. Dick short story Minority Report.  This anticipation waned quickly as the story began to unfold in what felt like slow motion.

The film revolves around a new technology that allows crimes of murder to be prevented before they occur through the use of "Precogs", humans with a talent for seeing the future.  Using the mental images drawn from these odd individuals, the Washington D.C. Pre-Crime unit was formed and its star player (Cruise) manipulates these images or, as they call it, scrubbing the images for clues, manage to find the time and place for the crime and prevent it.

While the special effects are very good, the story gets lost in what can only be called a weak attempt at delivering a feel good ending.  We see the star policeman, John Anderton (Cruise), dealing with demons that should have prevented him from being a police officer.  Not only is Anderton recovering from the loss of his son, his wife has left him and he has become a drug abuser.  Never do we see Anderton's anguish, we only see hoaky home movies and flash backs.  We never see what drives this man (it is supposed to be the need to prevent crimes like murder so another person will not have to deal with what he has dealt with) but never does he expose this need.  We get the obligatory "bad man" when the Department of Justice sends one of their own to explore the accurateness of the system.

In what is the biggest plot hole, Anderton begins to chase a "solved" case as a result of a stray image from one of the Precogs.  It is this little piece of story line that is never explained.  This attempt to understand what he knows and does not know places Anderton at risk and soon the very system he champions is turned against him.

It seems that the very creators of the system are determined to hide this secret and to destroy anyone who knows it and Anderton is soon placed on a path for destruction.  Now add into the mix the ex-wife coming to save the day and it is even more confusing.

The flaws in this film out weigh the fun and effects.  There are times where the words between and by characters are flying so fast it's hard to follow and yet the film drags horribly.

One would have hoped after Schlinder's List and Saving Private Ryan that Spielberg would have had the, for lack of a better word, balls to show the future in other than a utopian setting and to have better developed the characters.  When you leave the theater after seeing what is supposed to be a man torn apart by the abduction of his son, the loss of his wife and betrayal by the one person he held true above all others, one would expect to be reveling in his triumph over adversity or feeling for the lost soul doomed by events beyond his control.

This is one for the video store and not the big screen.

As always, keep the popcorn hot, the soda cold and look for me in the back row three seats in.

 
Frank
Chris
Tony
Jim
Jennifer
Kathleen
Avg.
Minority Report
B+
C
C
A-
B
A-
B
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