Wed January 9, 2002
The plot holes are as many as dot our own moon...
By John DeSando, WCBE's "It's Movie Time"
Earth in 2079 is less secure than in 2002. Our hero, Gary Sinise, is a weapons inventor mistaken for a bomb-carrying alien. Let the chase begin. Most of this lost-opportunity sci/fi is based on a story by Philip K. Dick, better known for his plots of "Total Recall" and the seminal "Blade Runner."
If exploring identity were all director Gary Fleder had in mind, then all would be well. But Fleder loves the special effects and easy plot devices (like a vent in every escape scene). It becomes a trifling footrace and has a plot twist you can see all the way from Mars.
The plot holes are as many as dot our own moon: Isn’t anyone interested in giving Sanise a test to show he’s not an alien? Isn’t it peculiar that so many vents are needed three quarters of a century from now? Hasn’t the X-Files exhausted dark filmmaking by then?
Vincent D’Onofrio is a bad good guy enlarged by low angle shots, a devilish goatee, and snarls to help you see he is a bad ass. Like everything else, he is telegraphed and stereotyped,yet he does complement the identity theme enough to make the only interesting character in the film.
If you want a surfeit of strobe shots and slow mo, then go to see this loser. If you can wait until later this year, maybe Steven Speilberg and Tom Cruise will have a winner adapting Philip K. Dick for their sci-fi film called "Minority Report."
John DeSando co-hosts WCBE's "It's Movie Time" and vice-chairs the Board of The Film Council of Greater Columbus.