Imagine that the final sequence of The Planet of the Apes, with Charlton Heston in front of the Statue of Liberty, can last for about 130 minutes of footage and have the presiding Oblivion visual key. This new foray Tom Cruise in the science fiction genre has reminded me many of the elements that led the classical and essential trilogy starring Charlton Heston in this genre: Planet of the Apes (1968), The Omega Man (1971 ) and Soylent Green (1973). His argument also reminded me paranoid fantasies of Philip K. Dick involving the lead character as a kind of cloak of unknowns and disclosures. I like that this sci-fi fable focus more on the characters and their personal conflicts in the deployment of visual effects and thrilling action sequences. It has moments of action and deployment of the landscape as the protagonist of the story is spectacular. So spectacular that I recommend to viewers who try to enjoy this walk through the ruins of the Earth in the larger screen as they can, to get the best performance. But the action with the fearsome drones (A reflection on the cold killer electronic warfare and distance of the superpowers against weaker opponents?), Persecution and the shots are not the most interesting not abound in the film as could be seeing the trailer. I think that may confuse some viewers, so I worth clarifying. Science fiction is proposed in Oblivion is far from continuous action shows. His show is on the conflict between the characters and a relaxed exhibition of his argument that he takes his time to go revealing the keys thereof, so that is not the frenetic pace could desire if we saw films like War of the Worlds or Minority Report, also starring Tom Cruise.
The interesting thing about Oblivion is that the hero’s odyssey to develop the style of those fables of Philip K. Dick in which the protagonist discovers himself through his journey through the futuristic landscape crumbling around him and the relationship with the two female co-stars of the film. The story we are told could be the adult version of Total Recall: again a mid-level operator dedicated to repairing damaged tools have dreams and aspirations that are not satisfied with your daily life with the spouse in your household. The dreams are associated with another female who is the bridge to a revelation, dream or maybe perhaps real, the true identity of the hero and reveal its essential role in a scheme of things much larger than at his adventures as mechanisms repairman defective. If to this we add a visual approach of futurism in the watchtower inhabiting the protagonist along with his partner has reminded me of classic science fiction genre as François Truffaut’s Fahrenheit 451, the first version of Rollerball directed by Norman Jewison, George Lucas’ THX 1138 or Andrei Tarkovsky’s Solaris, will understand why I think I should put four stars to this exciting production that nonetheless has some weaknesses which I will discuss now.
The first is that happy ending imposed on the plot and completely distorts, denying what we have seen previously in approximately 120 minutes of projection. The motivation of the hero is the epic sacrifice on the bridge, before the enemy, in the supreme moment of his heroic journey, it’s been a journey that is well known to himself, because Oblivion includes some curious elements of road movie. The hero faces his destiny while quoting poetry epic saga of Horatio. But the end of that makeup looks deprive sacrifice. A makeup whose clumsiness does not fit the rest of the puzzle, an unnecessary change only possible outcome for the plot: girl on the lawn in front of the house and the plane of the picture of the woman.
The second weakness is that the poor performance feature that will draw the characters of resistance. Morgan Freman is fine in his role, as is usual, and along with Andrea Riseborough in the role of Victoria, the companion of the protagonist, are as solid cast. But the character of Olga Kurylenko have been left quite topical and moreover should not take advantage as the character played by Nikolaj Coster Waldau. On the work of Tom Cruise I have to clarify that in my opinion is much better than his usual detractors will acknowledge afford. Which brings me back to the beginning of this article, remember that Charlton Heston also qualified as expressionless in the trilogy of science fiction films I mentioned, today considered classics of the genre. Cruise is not one of my favorite actors, but I think with this work effectively complete their own science fiction trilogy, Minority Report, War of the Worlds and Oblivion. Of the three, the first is more akin and therefore more comfortable for the actor, closest to the type of film Mission Impossible style. The second is in my opinion the weakest of the trio, a failed attempt. Oblivion however I find the hardest of the three for the actor, in this landscape far removed from what is usual in his films, and his work seems pretty convincing.
Miguel Juan Payán
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