During an historic counter-terrorism summit in Spain, the President of the United States is struck down by an assassin's bullet. Eight strangers have a perfect view of the kill, but what did they really see? As the minutes... more » leading up to the fatal shot are replayed through the eyes of each eyewitness, the reality of the assassination takes shape. But just when you think you know the answer, the shattering final truth is revealed. Vantage Point is a mind bending political action-thriller starring Dennis Quaid, Matthew Fox, Academy Award® Winner Forest Whitaker (Best Actor 2006, The Last King of Scotland), with Sigourney Weaver and Academy Award® winner William Hurt (Best Actor 1985, Kiss of the Spider Woman).« less
Vantage Point - Gets Better Towards the End, Worth Watching!
Mark | East Coast | 03/08/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
""Vantage Point" is a good action drama that you can predict pretty well from the trailer. It is based on a concept that has been done many times before, that of telling the same story from multiple points of view. Fans of "24" will get a strong sense of déjà vu 24 - Season 1 (Slim - Pack). Yet the core story is interesting. The action sequences and great camera work make this a movie worth watching. Good acting and a strong finish help to overcome some loose ends and production errors.
The President of the United States (William Hurt), or POTUS as referred to by the secret service, is the target of a group of terrorists whose objectives are never revealed to us. While overseas to attend an anti-terrorism summit in Spain, he is shot. Or is he?
Dennis Quaid and Mathew Fox (of "Lost" fame Lost - The Complete First Season) play secret service agents there to protect the President. After multiple attacks occur after the president is shot, they scramble to try to respond and find the shooter. It is very difficult to tell which attacks are meant to kill and which are meant to divert attention away from the villains.
Quaid takes advantage of Forest Whitaker's camcorder film and the media's tapes to piece together the story. As each of the characters is swung into action, we get to see their individual struggles to cope with chaos and how their stories are interconnected.
Perhaps in an homage to "24," after each character's scene finishes it 'rewinds' to the beginning to give us the next character's 'vantage point.' This gets old fast. After a while, these vantage points seem to disintegrate into one another and overlap more and more. In fact, this is one story where the effect seems to have taken away from the story.
The action sequences are very strong, and even though there's a lot of hand held camera work they get enough steady shots to make the chase scenes watchable. Most notable is a car chase scene that is bound to draw comparisons to Ronin Ronin, The Bourne Identity The Bourne Identity (Widescreen Extended Edition), The Italian Job The Italian Job (Special Collector's Edition) and other recent car chase movies. Putting together a sequence like that is very difficult, and I can't wait for the DVD to see how they did it. What can I say, I'm a sucker for a good car chase.
The pacing of the movie is good and especially improves once we get to the last few vantage points. The score is excellent and blends well with the action sequences. We are purposely left without reasons why this group is after the president.
There are some technical things that are off in the movie. Anybody who has ever been to Spain will get that uneasy feeling. Once you see the Mexican extras and hear them speak a very Central American Spanish it becomes clear they are in Mexico, not Spain. They try to use a few Spanish actors, but it's not enough to feel like Spain.
Some parts of the dialogue seem overly preachy. Still, this movie does effectively portray how difficult security planning is in a world where government security tactics are public knowledge. The story probably would have been more profound and meaningful with a traditional plot-line, which it turns into at the end anyway.
This movie is worth watching and improves a lot towards the end. You just have to get past several very annoying rewind sequences and plenty of early repetition.
Groundhog Day on Steroids!!!!
Raider Jack | San Francisco, CA United States | 07/23/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Vantage Point is an ingenious action thriller surrounding the attempted assasination of the U.S. President attending an international conference in Spain. The movie is actually 'about" 15 minutes but is seen from the "vantage point' (sorry) of about six different people. Each perspective presents a tad more about the swirling espionage associated with the conference until you realize that nothing is what you thought it was (AT ALL) in the beginning.
Perhaps I am not sophisticated enough to dwell on the supposed GLARING shortcomings of the film. I suspect some "critics" are conditioned/programmed to be oh so discerning that they can't see the forest for the trees - this was a thrilling, action-packed, and rather clever way of looking at an intense incident and is an excellent example of the age-old adage that truth is relative. Six people can look at exactly the same thing and see six different things.
Fun movie. Great action flick. I indeed recommend."
Come on people!!
Thomas Williams | Orlando, FL | 09/08/2008
(1 out of 5 stars)
"SPOILER WARNING!! Do not read this review if you don't want the movie revealed to you. It is a stupid movie so you would be losing nothing, but as someone else pointed out, you should be given the opportunity to know that my review does have spoilers in it.
I can't believe there aren't many more 1 star reviews on this horrible movie.
Wow, where do we start. Well, how about with the cell phone. It is fortunate for the free world that the bad guy hadn't completely read the owners manual because it would have meant some serious trouble for the rest of us. I'm sure the phone also has the ability to remotely fly Air Force 1, make the lights go and off in every office building in Spain, and order a pizza at the same time. Controlling a sniper rifle is child's play for that thing.
Do we really believe that the Secret Service is that inept? I've actually known Secret Service guys - that one lone bad guy dude at the end, THAT is the way THEY are. Talking about that super bad dude. Can anyone please explain to me why he put a mask over his face? He kills a squad of highly trained agents, then puts on his mask, kills a dozen more agents to the point where there is NO ONE LEFT (save one) and then he takes off his mask??!!! Why put it on in the first place???!!!
Then there is the ridiculous child in the movie. As someone else pointed out, these guys kill scores of innocent people but the guy has a case of consciousness at the end and rolls over his vehicle? What?? NO NO NO - a true bad guy (and this guy was) was not going to stop. Terrorists do not brake for Raccoons, squirrels, or little girls.
Why was Weaver in this movie?
I had no idea it was so so easy to place and transport bombs from place to place where the President was going to be. This movie has let out all of its secrets - who knew?
The plot was absolutely ridiculous. These movie makers know NOTHING about security. It is true that most people don't either, but you know watching this movie that even though you may not know much about it, there is common sense. Common sense would tell you that this movie was total crap.
Oh - another thing. Since when would you ever see a Russian, Chinese, or French secret service agent equivalent running through OUR streets, car jacking by simply flashing their Chinese/Russian/French badge, and firing shots into the air after a "suspect", who just so happens to be a policeman of OUR country. Heck not only shooting into the air but AT the suspect in a street full of innocent people. "Our" innocent people. Would any of us stand for that? Would any country stand for our secret service agents driving down their streets and shooting at people indiscriminately? Secondly, if one of them fires his gun half a dozen times (or was it a dozen, in all of the excitement I lost track myself) you would think they would be good enough to HIT their target. Of course the super bad dude NEVER missed. That is why I call him the "super" bad dude.
Do not waste your time with this movie. The trailer showed great promise and I am sure that this "could" have been a great movie. What an utter disappointment. Even more so that people actually like this movie. I know people are entitled to their opinion, but shees."
3 Stars and I am being kind.
Gogol | England | 04/08/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This film just follows on with the trend of every other post 9/11 terrorist movie. This one going for a slight twist when a terrorist attack is committed against the president of the United States in Spain is seen through various angles and peoples perspectives.
Problem with this film is as I have pointed out its been done a million times before and is just frankly getting boring now (Imagine watching 24 with even less interest and you get the idea) We have the disgruntled secret serviceman who has previously "took a bullet" for the president but never quite recovered, family man American on holiday who when not filming the whole event gets on with the locals and even saves a few of them, hard sell camera crew (Changed CNN to GNN)they even seemed to pick the darkest Spanish people to be as support actors (Was that just to emphasise to the American audience that this was Spain?)
So we have unknown terrorist group whose goal is never quite explained (Though they do appear to have an Arabic name and a base in "friendly" Morocco. I guess just giving us that was enough to convince us of their "badness") Plan an elaborate terrorist attack (If these people do have this kind of planning then God help us all!) with a multi national group with an end aim that is just as unexplained as the actual goals of the organisation itself. Running chase, so called twist to the tale, not so subtle hints as to who the bad guys are and you pretty much have the plot (Not that there is much of one) We are even given a moving speech from the president who refuses to retaliate to the bomb attack with a military strike because that would be "Just what these people want" and encourages his advisers to stick with the conference (Was this supposed to be some kind of "What could have been" Post 9/11) Either way it becomes a mute point when his advisers get gunned down 2 seconds later.
Difficult to have anything positive to say about this film. Instantly forgettable."
A Compelling Movie with a Very Entertaining Concept
Electro | 04/25/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I hadn't heard much about Vantage Point before going to see it in the dollar theaters last week, and I must say this film deserved a lot more attention than it seems to have gotten. The concept of the movie (which is hinted at in the title) is what especially makes Vantage Point a compelling and unique film; I won't address the pattern it revolves around directly since it comes as a nice surprise, but the vantage points by which the movie progresses are very entertaining and suspenseful. Just when I thought I had figured out everything about what was going on, I was not even close. Plenty of twists, thrilling action scenes, and surprises make this movie a must-see. The acting is all tremendous as well; my only criticisms would be the tendency of the film to have parts which were incredibly unrealistic. These parts still contributed to the entertaining nature of Vantage Point, however, and so they didn't bother me much. Overall, this movie combines a unique setting with a fascinating plotline to make one solid film. I would rate Vantage Point four and a half of five stars and highly recommend seeing it. One of my favorite movies so far this year."