Tuesday, August 07, 2007

The Island (with spoilers)

It's fashionable to hate Michael Bay films...

This one really has a lot of promise though. The idea of an allegedly post-apocalyptic Brave New World scenario where the people don't realise that actually they only exist as clones to be sources of spare organs for rich members of "normal" society is a very clever one. But the big twist is spoiled. There isn't a "Soylent Green" moment - the viewer gets to see the adults being taught to read and being grown in pods as adults before the protagonist works it out. In addition, the idea of a horribly contaminated world with one island untouched by pollution just doesn't work, and people "educated to the level of a 15 year old" (as the clones are claimed to be) should be able to realise that fairly easily.

Further suspense is also ruined by product placement. The examples of product placement don't get destroyed or burst into flames. The cars, etc which are conspicuous by their lack of brand do. And when one of the twists revolves around a character turning good, it seems a shame to have an actor who only ever plays strong good guys (Djimon Honsou) in the role.

Oh yes, and why do all the internal walls rely on holographic projection to look nice? Wouldn't it be much easier to do it properly?

Nice idea, decent acting (even though Ewan MacGregor's accent wanders a little), the micro direction stuff is fine but someone really needed to think more about how the film keeps going from the viewer's perspective.

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