Monday, June 9, 2014

[Review] Edge of Tomorrow

William Cage (Tom Cruise) awakens at an army base and is forced into immediate warfare, and he has no idea what he's doing. Like a fish out of water, he practically soils his heavy duty combat suit. During a battle on a beach against robotic, alien-like creatures called Mimics, William gets his head blown off, only to wake up right back where he first started.

That's the time concept twist in Edge of Tomorrow. It's as if William is stuck in a perpetual state of a choose your own adventure video game. Along the way he meets a woman named Rita (multiple times), played by Emily Blunt, and he learns that she used to have the same experiences. The two join forces as Rita trains him until they can finally get things right.

The time device is clever and effective enough to avoid falling into eye-rolling redundancy. The catch is that William is still able to remember the events that happen before he dies. Therefore, he discovers something new each go-around, makes different decisions, and sometimes advances further. The repetition actually creates some surprising humor, whether it's particular lines of repeating dialogue, everyone around him thinking he's crazy, or the certain moments when he dies even quicker than the previous mission--embracing the "Dammit, here we go again" sentiment.

The story eventually settles into a groove, and builds to run-of-the-mill sci-fi action. The film isn't as stylish and thought-provoking as contemporaries like Looper, but it is more fun than Source Code. Edge of Tomorrow is an entertaining popcorn flick that surpasses it's on-paper qualities, but after seeing it once, you probably won't be compelled to watch it over and over again.


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