Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Eagle Eye |
Actors: Shia LaBeouf, Michelle Monaghan, Rosario Dawson, Michael Chiklis, Anthony Mackie
Director: D.J. Caruso
Genres: Action & Adventure, Mystery & Suspense
Two strangers must do bidding of mysterious voice on phone.
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Reviewed on 7/27/2013...
Shia, dude, you shoulda just let that call go to voice mail.
H. Bala | Carson - hey, we have an IKEA store! - CA USA | 01/01/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The Bourne Ultimatum (Widescreen Edition) and Minority Report (Widescreen Edition) both produced similar moments which I really dug, in which a near omniscient character guides his/her fleeing companion and does so with such exquisite timing and pinpoint accuracy that capture is thereby avoided (Jason Bourne in one film, that psychic chick in the other). EAGLE EYE is one extended version of these two moments, and, guess what, it doesn't get old.
I guess this could happen, government voyeurism, what with how advanced technology's gotten. In fact, I've no doubt this is happening right now. EAGLE EYE presents a twisty plot, the soup of which blends Big Brother paranoia, the techno thriller, the shadow of terrorism, a whiff of Skynet, and the classic man on the run theme. EAGLE EYE tells of two strangers - Jerry Shaw, the slacker copy boy (excuse me, "copy associate") from Copy Cabana and Rachel, the stressed single mom/paralegal - suddenly flung together by a mysterious (and dang pushy) female who gives them brisk instructions over their cell phones, forcing them to frenetically run and jump around, drive like they've got to use the bathroom, hold up a pair of security guards for a briefcase (of which contents are a letdown, by the way), and even sneak onboard a military cargo plane. And those are just for starters...
The most intriguing part of the film, for me, was learning what was up with the voicy voice, who's cornered Jerry by framing him as a terrorist and cornered Rachel by threatening to kill her son. Much of the suspense leaks out once the film drops the 411 on the cell phone taskmaster. EAGLE EYE is escapist cinema which may have started out intending to make some sort of significant political and social statement but then kind of shrugged it off halfway thru the film. There's no dearth of far-fetched moments (like, on the train, where there just happened to be a conveniently snoozing stranger with a celly sitting right across from Shia or Rachel being so out-of-the-blue capable with a firearm). But the third act really goes ape-shiznit with the preposterous as the Big Bad's plans coalesce and imperil the nation's highest offices. The film's big crescendo echoes the climax scene from Hitchcock's The Man Who Knew Too Much.
Will Smith's ENEMY OF THE STATE and the Bourne series have already demonstrated that the government can check up on us by accessing security, surveillance, and traffic cameras, as well as cell phones. EAGLE EYE one-ups these films by featuring an antagonist who is more far reaching, more omnipresent. The voice not only can track any person anytime, anywhere, by tapping into the nation's electronic data grid, but she can remotely control stop lights, steer elevated trains, set off power lines, and even take over military aircrafts. When our heroes go on the run (and don't really have time to chat on the cell), they get helpful directions from various electronic billboard signs, readout displays and monitor screens. So, unless you're Amish, there's no escaping the nagging voice.
Shia LaBeouf lost some cred with me for his vine-swinging part in the latest Indiana Jones flick. Here, he's decent but this really isn't a platform to show off his acting chops, slave as the picture is to the quick cut edits, flashy stunts and loud pyrotechnics. LaBeouf's characer has a few moments to do his surly, angst-ridden bit (what with his dead twin brother being the brighter light in the family), but he and lead actress Michelle Monaghan actually come off more as chess pieces being shuffled about by the all powerful entity to progress its murky end game. Julianne Moore plays the mysterious voice on the phone, managing to sound impersonal yet officiously sexy. Billy Bob Thornton is good as the undeterred FBI guy and Rosario Dawson is wasted as Air Force OSI Agent Zoey Perez trying to piece it all together. Thornton, by the way, comes up with the best line in the film, as he chews out his underlings: "If I don't get some good leads soon, you're all gonna be demoted into something that's gonna require touching $#!t with your hands!"
So, why am I four-starring this film? Because, in spite of the over-the-top beats, I got hooked into the premise enough that I had to see it thru to the end. And it may be loud and sometimes incoherent, but, damn if I didn't enjoy the wild ride. I think the key is that the film moves at such a frenetic pace that it forces you to shift your focus from one sequence to the next. You might just have enough time to ponder the implausibility of whatever's on the screen, but then you almost immediately get distracted with the next implausible thing on the screen. It's sleight-of-hand trickeration, is what it is. And, in the final tally, I had a good time (and, yes, part of the good time was spent making fun of the film).
As for the government accessing our electronic devices, that would certainly explain why I'm so sucky at Tetris on my cell phone. Now I see that it's the government conducting cyber terrorism. Those finks."
Review of film and blu ray version
barry | Boston, MA United States | 04/28/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I must admit most of this review will be based on my second viewing of this film. Both viewings were on blu ray but the first time I had high expectations. The story line intrigued me and I am a huge Shia LaBeouf fan. With the first viewing I didn't like it very much. I liked Shia but I thought the story line pushed the limits and was just too unbelievable for me. It looked great in blu ray but I was disappointed.
Well, we all know that our experiences when we have expectations can sometimes be altered. I love blu ray, have consistently read how EAGLE EYE is one of the best films to utilize blu ray to its full effect so now, many months after my first viewing I purchased EAGLE EYE. I wanted to have it for I do want to own every Shia LaBeouf film and I am so grateful I did. This time I sat back with my home theater system with no expectations and was on the edge of my seat from beginnig to end. Knowing the plot and having no expectations allowed me to just view it and amazingly the plot suddendlty made sense, caught me up from beginning to end and I enjoyed myself immensely.
Kudos first must go to the acting. Shia LaBeouf, Michelle Monaghan and Billy Bob Thornton all up the ante with their acting chops. These characters are believable and it is refreshing to have the male and female lead not get romantically involved. It brings more of a sense of relity to the film. This film is directed and acted with respect to the story and it is very believable once you get caught up. It is also filled with amazing action sequences and they were all right - blu ray is the only real way to enjoy this film to is full effect. The video presentation is an amazingly crisp 1080p. Colors and clarity are perfection. Flesh tones are just right and the quality does not falter be it day or night, inside or outside. The video never falters throughout the amazing action sequences. The audio is an amazing Dolby TruHD 5.1. Whether with dialogue driven scenes or the major action driven scenes the audio is strong, vibrant and realistic. All the speakers of your theatre system will be put to use and the sound quality throughout is at such a level that it makes the film that much more stimulating.
This is the first time I have ever said that if you did not like a film the first time give it a second shot but EAGLE EYE is an action film of the highest caliber with stimulating suspense. Certainly one I plan on viewing again and again. Highly recommend."
I, Robot meets North by Northwest meets Terminator II meets
Turfseer | New York, N.Y. | 03/15/2009
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Eagle Eye is based on a Spielberg concept and executive produced by him. Spielberg is famous for successfully incorporating technical elements from famous films and directors into his own films but never quite developing his characters equal to the masters. Taking a cue from Spielberg, director D.J. Caruso has decided to shoot a film that is virtually all action and has virtually no character development. Take Shia LaBeouf's character, 'Jerry Shaw'. LaBeouf's plays him over the top, constantly angry and fighting with everybody, starting with his father (who he hates), spurning his offer to pay his tuition and return to college at Stanford where he had dropped out two years earlier. There is virtually nothing likable about our protagonist from the beginning! When a secret Department of Defense computer named Aria goes berserk and deposits over $700,000 into Shaw's bank account and then dumps a cache of terrorists' weapons in his apartment, leading to his arrest by the FBI, Shaw has to figure out who has set him up. He ends up escaping from the FBI's clutches with the help of the computer and then being paired with Michelle Monaghan who plays 'Rachel Holloman', a divorced single mother.
Jerry and Rachel are ordered about by this computer under pain of death to go to and fro to all kinds of crazy locations, fulfilling the computer's various commands that don't seem to have a discernible purpose. The computer stays in contact with our two protagonists by all means of computer connected gadgetry (principally cell phones) but also at times through electronic devices (such as LCD screens at the subway) that are not ostensibly connected to computers. At first Jerry and Rachel are yelling at each other all the time but gradually come to realize that they have been victimized by a common enemy. In addition to surviving numerous car chases (which are edited so poorly, it's often impossible to know what's going on), they suddenly find the moxie to disarm armored truck guards. Meanwhile, they're being chased by an FBI agent played by an unhealthy looking Billy Bob Thornton who injects no humor, charm or wit into the role. The same goes for Zoe Perez who plays a Department of Defense investigator who eventually discovers why the computer has gone berserk. It seems that the computer has decided to eliminate the President and his underlings after the Military fails to heed its advice to abort a mission to kill a terrorist utilizing a drone somewhere in Afghanistan (or some nearby terrorist haven). The computer was 'locked' at the last second by Shaw's twin brother who mysteriously dies in a car accident at the beginning of the movie. The computer needs Jerry to unlock the command and eventually summons him to her lair.
Eagle Eye borrows heavily from superior films such as I, Robot and Terminator II where the protagonist must disable the computer to keep it from committing its nefarious acts. I can't remember the exact manner in which Zoe Perez actually disables "Aria" here in Eagle Eye but the computer 'takedown' by Will Smith and Arnold Schwarzenegger in their respective films is much more exciting and sophisticated than what is depicted here.
In an awkward tribute to Hitchcock's "The Man Who Knew Too Much", Shia is given the Jimmy Stewart part where he must prevent Rachel's son from hitting a high note while playing the Star Spangled Banner on his trumpet at the White House. The note will trigger an explosion that will eliminate the US chain of command from the President on down (In "The Man Who Knew Too Much", Jimmy Stewart must prevent the assassination of a world leader while a symphony orchestra also hits a 'high note--masking the sound of the assassin's bullet). In addition to LaBeouf's one-note performance, my main problem with the film was that I couldn't understand why such a logical entity as a computer would be so illogical in constructing such a convoluted plot to accomplish its goals. What's surprising about Eagle Eye is that it actually starts out realistically (the botched terrorist strike actually looks like something that could happen!). I understand that action-adventure films aren't supposed to be 'realistic' but shouldn't they conform to some kind of internal logical? Unfortunately, logic is almost completely lacking here.