Film #132: Edge of Tomorrow (2014)

aBqD3ZDirector: Doug Liman
Language: English
Length: 113 minutes
Watched on: 22 Dec 2014

I got on a plane to go back to the UK in December. As I’m prone to doing, I immediately got to work with the entertainment system. BA doesn’t seem to be as good as the other ones, unfortunately, and although the selection was alright, it was all recent releases, without much in the way of old stuff.

In any case, this seemed like a good enough choice as a first movie, as it’s a relatively low-brow action movie and Tom Cruise vehicle. It’s probably fair to describe it as a cross between Groundhog Day and Mission Impossible, although I’ve never seen Mission Impossible and doubt that it includes aliens to such a degree.

Cruise’s character tries to desert the army because he’s a self-righteous douche who can’t take orders from a superior and gets thrown down on the battlefield with exactly zero experience ready to die at the hands of some spitting alien monster. Then he wakes up again and thus begins what is basically known by everyone as a Groundhog Day loop: whenever he dies, he begins the day again.

But the problem immediately is that we’re comparing this movie to Groundhog Day, one of the 90s’ greatest exports and a literally timeless movie classic. What with Cruise’s wooden acting (although that’s perhaps an insult to trees), Edge of Tomorrow has absolutely none of the emotional depth or grounding that Groundhog Day had. Groundhog Day‘s character development arc included a section in the middle where Bill Murray just starts getting out of bed and killing himself every day through sheer desperation. None such here, although there is, to confirm with the standard Hollywood arc, a section of milder-seeming despair about twenty minutes from the end.

What is does have, however, is both tension and plenty of action, which is what I was actually watching it for, so in that sense it did its job. Could have done without the forced romance, though.

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