General Release 2007
96 minutes approx
Cris Johnson -
Callie Ferris -
Directed by -
Written by -
Gary Goldman, Johnathan Hensleigh & Paul Bernbaum
Terrorists have brought a nuclear weapon into the continental United States and earnest FBI agent Julianne Moore believes that the only way to stop the inevitable is to get hold of a man who shows the talent for seeing the future, his own that is and only the next two minutes of it. When he is less than keen on the idea and skips town with his newly-acquired girlfriend, the gloves come off for both the desperate agents and the ruthless terrorists.
You have to feel for Nicolas Cage. It's not so long since he was headlining high octane thrillers such as FACE OFF, THE ROCK and CON AIR. In the last year he has starred in the unforgiveable remake of THE WICKER MAN and the brightly-coloured, but otherwise completely boneheaded superhero flick GHOST RIDER.
And now he's in NEXT, a film that is, if possible, more stupid than both of those, put together. That someone can see two minutes into their own future - OK. That this might be pushed out when it's really important to them - OK. That this makes them an unstoppable action machine able to dodge bullets, falling cars and exploding hand-grenades - say what? It's one thing to know that a punch is going to be thrown at you in the next two minutes, but quite another to be able to use that information to dodge it, and the other twenty that follow. As for bullet-dodging?
What it does allow the director to do is to show all kinds of death happening and then wind back the action and go a different way. That's fine and, in some cases, works really well, but wehn you use that same trick to stop the film and say, 'Sorry, I made a mistake - see you all in the sequel' then the line has not so much been crossed as hung, drawn and quartered. That might work in the opening episode of a TV show (which this actually plays very much like), but in a movie it just leaves the audience feeling cheated.
Nic Cage can do this kind of action man thing in his sleep and he really does look like he's doing just that. Julianne Moore at least looks like she's trying in the role of the earnest FBI woman willing to do whatever it takes to save lives, but also looks like she's wondering how she got herself into this. As for Jessica Biel, well she's just there to look gorgeous enough to die for, something that she does with ease (and again without trying).
The action scenes are OK without being anything special, especially since we know that our hero can see what's coming and so avoid it every time. Where there's no danger there's no tension.
This is too good a cast for nonsense like this and would someone please have a word with Nic Cage's agent and get him a decent role in a good film.Top
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