MPAA: Rated PG-13 for violence, brief language, some sexuality
and drug content.
Sound Mix: DTS / Dolby EX 6.1
Official Website: Minority
Perhaps the two most powerful and influential people in filmmaking
over the past twenty years have finally come together to make
a movie. And of course, since we are talking about two professionals
and visionaries who have never rested on their laurels, they have
created something to behold. Sci - fi, action, who-dunit, minority
report is rich and layered. Cruise puts in a convincing performance
as John Anderton, a detective at the department of pre - crime
in Washington D.C. Colin Farrel and Max Von Sydow also deliver
strong supporting performances. There hasn't been a murder in
six years. The system seems flawless and is about to go national.
Unfortunately there are a few glitches that could prevent this
from happening. When it is preordained that Anderton himself will
murder someone in less than two days, he leads his former colleagues
on a wild goose chase that contains some classic sequences.
In one scene the police track him to an apartment building and
deploy small mechanical spiders that perform retinal scans on
all of the warm bodies in the building. This is just one example
of the many brilliant ideas Spielberg created while in his "think
tank", to which he invited many prominent scientists and
futurists. The special effects in minority report put those of
Spider - Man and Episode III to shame, not because of how much
cgi there is, but how it is used. Spielberg is a technical wizard
but knows that special effects are just a way to enhance his vision,
and that the real meat of a film is characters and plot. minority
report is a masterful work which is deserving of the millions
it is sure to make at the box office.
minority report is the fourth movie in the past twenty years
adapted from a short story by sci fi visionary Philip K. Dick.
So far, his works "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?",
"We Can Remember It For You Wholesale", and "Second
Variety" have been made into Blade Runner, Total Recall,
and Screamers, respectively. So two genre classics and one halfway
decent popcorn movie. Overall, pretty good so far. So it should
come as no surprise whatsoever that Report, directed by Steven
Spielberg from a Scott Frank script, and shot by Janusz Kaminski,
is quite possibly the best of the entire lot.
In the year 2054, the District of Columbia has been conducting
a six year experiment called "pre-crime" whereby all
murder has been prevented by use of "pre-cogs" - those
who can see the future. Criminals are caught mere moments before
they can even commit their crimes. The system is considered perfect
by many, especially John Anderton (Tom Cruise), the chief detective
in the pre-crime organization. Not surprisingly, though, it has
its detractors. Federal Detective Ed Witwer (Colin Farrell) is
leading an investigation to uncover any potential flaws before
a vote is cast to make pre-crime the national standard. Anderton
is hardly thrilled to have Witwer snooping around, but things
go from bad to worse in a hurry as Anderton finds himself a fugitive
when the pre-cogs finger him as a future murderer. This much you
no doubt already know, since you've probably seen the trailers
already and heard the movie's tagline, "Everybody runs."
Unlike other Orwellian societies we've seen in film, Spielberg
presents this one as a utopia of sorts, making the viewer, who
might otherwise think the premise is alarming, at least open to
the possibility that this society is a better one. This credit
has to go largely to production designer Alex McDowell, who's
helped to create a very attractive future, and one that's not
so different as to be inaccessible or undesirable to most people.
And as long as I'm going on about the things I liked, let me gush
a little about Kaminski's photography. If it's even possible to
outdo what he did in A.I. - Artificial Intelligence last year,
he's done it here. Much of the film is tinted grayish-blue thanks
to a combination of both camera filters and chemical processing.
It's not arbitrary either. Different types of settings in the
film have completely different lighting schemes, which makes the
contrasts more noticeable.
Cruise is fantastic as Anderton, but as is the case with most
Tom Cruise movies, he's really the only actor who's full potential
is utilized. Colin Farrell is solid as Witwer, but more could
have been done with his character. Similarly, Neal McDonough continues
to do great work in his supporting role as Officer Fletcher. Also,
despite months (years?) of script tweaking, just a tad more could
have done a service to the last 25 minutes of the film. The film
seems to end almost twice, so I have a feeling detractors may
say this is the second movie in a row that Spielberg has made
that very same mistake.
But the bottom line is this - minority report is very, very good.
The science is a bit impossible in one or two spots, and I do
have some philosophical issues with it, but they're the same ones
I have concerning every other dystopic movie ever made, so I'm
just not gonna bother. It has to do with utilitarianism and it's
just largely irrelevant to this review. What is relevant is that
minority report is probably the best science fiction movie to
come out in a long time.
Tom Cruise .... Detective John Anderton
Max von Sydow .... Director Lamar Burgess
Steve Harris (I) .... Jad
Neal McDonough .... Officer Fletcher
Patrick Kilpatrick .... Knott
Jessica Capshaw .... Evanna
Richard Coca .... Pre-Crime Cop
Kirk B.R. Woller .... Pre-Crime Cop (Ross)
Klea Scott .... Pre-Crime Cop
Frank Grillo .... Pre-Crime Cop
Anna Maria Horsford .... Casey
Sarah Simmons (I) .... Lamar Burgess' Secretary
Eugene Osment .... Jad's Technician
James Henderson (II) .... Office Worker #1
Vene L. Arcoraci .... Office Worker