Monday, December 19, 2005

The Island

I saw a great movie this weekend, but I will warn you: if you haven't seen it then I am about to spoil it for you. I have to. Otherwise I can't really talk about it.

The movie is called The Island. Did you get that from the title and the image? Remember, I only get to see movies when they come out on DVD, and only after the kids go to bed. I thought the science fiction movie had gone the way of disco, a guilty pleasure nobody can admit to. How many sci fi films have you seen that you can truly call original or engaging? Not many. But this movie gave me hope.

Let's dispense with the disclaimers first. One one level, this film was nothing more than a hollywood action film that John Woo is probably kicking himself for not getting involved with. One scene has the actors falling from a several story skyscraper and landing safely in a net. Visually stunning but insulting to the intelligence. I will say that I hate action films for this very reason. If you are a fan of John Woo, Van Dam, Segal, etc, and love to watch bullets fly A-Team style, cars explode Dukes of Hazzard style--well, this movie is just perfect for you.

What intrigued me was the actual fiction, you know, the story, that despite the intrusion of all these pyrotechnics, really stole the show. The story is set in the near future, where people are cloned as insurance policies to the insanely rich. If you need a new heart--no problem. It will be harvested from your clone and a new clone will be grown to take her place. The insured think their clones are insentient beings, bags of protoplasm with no self-awareness, and the company presents it this way. But the reality is that these clones are living, walking, talking people who think they live underground, protected from a contaminated world. The Island, they believe, is a Garden of Eden, where the lucky few are sent by lottery. Of course there is no Island, and those that are sent there are euthenized when their real function is executed.

It reminds me a little of the Truman Show, another movie that I loved. Because this is a realistic, believable and forseeable future. Money rules. If you have it, you can have anything.

For all you Bush bashers out there, what movie would be complete without a passive aggressive, back handed slap of the president? The president has an insurance policy as well, who Ewen MacGregor refers to as an idiot. If this were Bill Clintons day, he would have been portrayed as the clone who couldn't keep his tool in his tights, even though his sex drive had been removed. I don't understand it sir. We cut it off but it keeps growing back!

Oh, this is funny. I was about to rave about the writer, Caspian Tredwell-Owen, so I googled him and found that there is a suit filed in Federal Court. Apparently this story is a copy of a low budget Indy film called Clonus.


Oh, and Scarlett Johanssen. Nuff said.


mr. schprock said...

I'm watching it now. I wondered if it was really good.

trinamick said...

I enjoyed it too. I saw it in a little podunk theater in SD, and it was great fun. Plus, I don't mind unrealistic movies. ;P

magnetbabe said...

I didn't read your review past "I'm about to spoil it for you" cuz I want to see this movie. I'll let you know when I do.

Shesawriter said...

I stopped reading when I saw the word spoil. :-) I wasn't going to see it, but since you recommended it, I think I will.



The Zombieslayer said...

Oh, and Scarlett Johanssen. Nuff said.

I was wondering if you were going to mention her. She's almost young enough to be my daughter, but...:)

I might see this then.

Scott said...

Mr. Schprock - I'll be curious what you think about it.

Trina - Nothing wrong with that in my book, it's a personal thing with me, that seems to come with age, ie, gets stronger and I'm crankier.

MagnetBabe and Tanya - I'm glad I put that up there, because I pretty much layed it out there. Part of the fun is not knowing.

Zombie - I almost gave you a shout out. I think she's got something offbeat that makes her sexy.

Jada's Gigi said...

I've been wanting to see this one. Can't imagine anything better that action packed sci-fi. :) Seriously....I am planning to see this one...perhaps with my 20 somethings kiddos, yes?

Jenn said...

Okay, I'm gonna be honest and not read, because it's a spoiler and I plan on watching that movie very soon.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you and yours, Scott! XOXO

Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

Me too.

I'll check it out on your initial recommendation though.

Sadie Lou said...

I reviewed this movie too and I was surprised by how many people disliked it. My husband and I don't get out to the movies very much and we loved how entertained we were by The Island.
It would have been a little better if Ewan sang.
If you want to read my review, you can go to my blog and plug "The Island" into my search engine.
I feel good that you liked it too.