by Rick Grant
This wild fast moving action film is the perfect genre to show off IMax to its highest potential.. Wow, the action on the gigantic screen was spectacular when I viewed the movie on AMC Regency’s new digital IMax theater. The crystal clear images combined with the gut wrenching soundtrack was an adrenalin high.
Director D.J. Caruso and writer John Glenn created a cautionary tale of a massive cyber attack on America. The attacker, a computer voice, was into everything run by computers-traffic lights, military communications, television, streaming video, car computers, the electrical grid, and construction equipment. The premise is similar to the Terminator concept when computers of the future declared war on humans.
The rapid fire scenario is told through the eyes of the two main characters Jerry Shaw (Shia
LaBeouf) and Rachel Holloman (Michelle Monaghan). These two characters did not know each other and are thrown together when they start receiving strange cell phone calls from a woman who gives them specific instructions to avoid events that are precipitated by the voice-obviously a computer controlled by the attacker that has hacked into the country’s vast computer infrastructure.
Jerry and Rachel were chosen at random by the attacker for their various qualifications, IQ, temperament, and a myriad other psychological factors to be the human part of the attack. Resistance is futile, since the attacker can influence everything to keep Jerry and Rachel on the run.
In the beginning, viewers learn that Jerry’ brother was into Army intelligence and was killed in a traffic accident. Both brothers had genius IQ but Jerry dropped out of school and became a drifter. This factor gave him street smarts. When Jerry meets Rachel she is being manipulated by the computer voice and the two unwitting fugitives are running from every law enforcement agency on the planet.
The two citizens were setup for reasons unknown in the first part of the film. Jerry comes home one day to find his apartment full of high tech weapons and bomb making ingredients put there by strangers. He has no idea what’s happening. But the voice calls him and tells him to get out of the apartment the FBI is coming. He hesitates and gets arrested. Lead Agent Thomas Morgan (Billy Bob Thornton) interrogates Jerry who tells Agent Morgan he’s been setup.
Of course, by now, the FBI and Homeland Security have a file on Jerry. It doesn’t take long for the computer voice to arrange a break out and Jerry is on he run. Soon he meets up with Rachel, whose son has been kidnapped and she is doing what the voice wants to save her son.
A massive man hunt is launched with the full recourses of the government. But the computer attacker is running interference by changing traffic lights, and even running construction equipment. Agent Morgan now knows this is a countrywide cyber-attack. For him, getting the facts is extremely difficult because there are so many competing agencies involved.
Fear drives Jerry and Rachel as they try to comply with the computer voice. Clearly, they are being sucked into a huge conspiracy that has seized control of America’s computers which control everything.
Helmsman Caruso built the momentum with loud special effects and incredible stunts that keep the audience’s keyed up. Seeing this high caliber action film on IMax increases the excitement exponentially. By the end of the movie, the audience is exhausted from the thrill ride. By all means, see this film on IMax. It will blow your mind.
by Rick Grant