Director: Duncan Jones, Summit Entertainment, Rated M, 93 Mins
After making his directorial debut with Moon, Duncan Jones returns with a particularly intriguing sci-fi thriller that has a number of scenes replayed of a couple on a commuter train- that explodes- who ultimately become an integral feature in Ben Ripley’s stimulating script about body transfers and time travel.
The movie’s opening sequence sets the scene for the surreal storyline with Jake Gyllenhaal (Prince of Persia) seen sitting in a train opposite the beautiful Michelle Monaghan (Eagle Eye) who addresses him as “Sean” but is told that his real name is Captain Colter Stevens.
After seeing an image of himself, Stevens realises that he is occupying the body of another man and as he converses with the lovely lady opposite him - Christina Warren (Monaghan), the train suddenly explodes, thrusting him back into his military uniform, inside an isolation chamber.
On waking he finds himself facing an interactive screen and speaking to a Captain Colleen Goodwin (Orphan star Vera Farmiga) who informs him that he is part of the source code scientific program that can project him back in time into another person’s body to counter future disasters.
In the current experiment he is told that he only has eight minutes to find the person responsible for planting a bomb on the Chicago bound train that will explode and kill everyone on board.
With Stevens having such a tight deadline to find the bomber the scenes of the train explosion are continually repeated until the dramatic climax when Stevens then seeks to save Christina’s life contrary to the orders of the program director Dr Rutledge (Jeffrey Wright).
Source Code is not your typical sci-fi thriller with some resemblance to the mind-bending scenes seen in Inception but it is both engaging and intriguing due in large part to Gyllenhaal’s performance who conveys the right doses of emotion and tension to his dual role.
Of course it is Jones who deserves most credit for making such an inventive movie that is for the most part entertaining to watch.
VIC'S VERDICT: 3 ½ Rubber Stamp
DVD REVIEW (Sony)
Release Date: May 2011
Director: Steve Antin, Sony Pictures, Rated M, 119 Mins
Another DVD being released in May is actor turned director Steve Antin’s debut movie musical which provides a glitzy insight into the unseemly burlesque scene, starring the legendary actor/singer Cher and pop sensation Christina Aguilera in her first film role. Burlesque tells the story of the fading popularity of the Burlesque Lounge and the attempts by its owner Tess (Cher) to keep it going despite the mounting debts - even refusing to accept an offer from Marcus Gerber (Eric Dane) an unscrupulous speculator interested in purchasing it.
All this changes with the hiring of small town girl Ali Rose (Aguilera) as a waitress who with the assistance of theatre manager Sean (Stanley Tucci) sees her ambition realised when she is given the opportunity to perform on stage.
Her incredible voice retrieves the past glory of the Burlesque Lounge receiving once again public acclaim but with the Lounge still in debt, Tess together with Ali’s help finds a solution to her predicament.
With music forming a large component in the movie it would appear that Antin’s Burlesque is more of a vehicle to show off Christina Aguilera’s voice including her acting skills.
Despite some interesting bonus features this DVD will have most appeal for Aguilera fans.
VIC'S VERDICT: 2 ½ Rubber Stamps
DVD REVIEW (Disney)
Release Date: May 2011
Director: Nathan Greno and Byron Howard, Walt Disney Studios, Rated G, 100 Mins
Disney’s newest DVD is its latest animated movie for the entire family to enjoy-especially younger children - and it is a beauty.
The story revolves around the long haired Princess Rapunzel (voiced by Mandy Moore) who has spent her entire life in a tower until the day she accidentally encounters Flynn Rider (voiced by Zachery Levi), a thief seeking refuge in the tower after stealing the crown jewels.
Having been afraid to venture outside the tower, Rapunzel strikes a deal with Flynn that he can keep his stolen possessions provided he agrees to show her the outside world which is the beginning of their adventurous escapade together.
Despite the unusual title, Disney has introduced another classic fairytale filled with adventure, humour and romance - involving a beautiful princess and a thief - two different type of characters (similar to Beauty and the Beast) who later fall for each other.
Besides the charming characters there is the added pleasure of seeing a wonderful storyline that is complemented by Disney’s brilliant animation and which is further enhanced by a wonderful range of bonus features on Blu-ray and DVD editions.
VIC'S VERDICT: 4 ½ Rubber Stamps
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