06 June 2014

Tom Cruise Provides Great Entertainment in Edge of Tomorrow

And because there was – yet again – another 8-5 scheduled outage yesterday, I did the sensible thing and went to the mall for a movie. As I usually do because I am not particularly fond of queuing up, I went for the opening show.

I actually wanted to see ‘Maleficent,’ but arrived at the movie house to find myself in something of a conundrum. I did not know that Tom Cruise’s ‘Edge of Tomorrow’ was already showing.

Chances were that I would find myself in the company of giggly teenagers with Maleficent; and because it was too early to be annoyed, I thought that Edge of Tomorrow would be the better way to pass the morning.

Except that there were two ladies loudly talking to each other in the middle of the movie… I momentarily considered shushing the both of them; then realised from what I could make of their conversation that one was struggling to keep up with the story and the other one was trying to help her make something of it.


One online article claims Edge of Tomorrow to be Cruise’s best film in 15 years. I am rather inclined to agree. This movie has nothing of his angst-filled performance in ‘Born on the Fourth of July,’ but has quality in the modern context.
There were a couple of kids running around, too. I had made my mind up that I would not allow myself to be annoyed; but what an utter waste of money on the kids. They would not understand the story beyond the explosions, which at least were plentiful.

Personally, I am beginning to wonder why an increasing amount of Hollywood films of late have turned to quantum theory for their plots; as though they are subliminally preparing homo sapiens to be accepting of something that governments clandestinely already know.

Like aliens and time travel, two concepts upon which Edge of Tomorrow is premised.

Tom Cruise is Cage, a United States officer who is not really a combatant but finds himself thrust into the frontline for a global army fighting alien invaders called the Mimics.

Those among the readers old enough to remember the classic film ‘Groundhog Day’ will quickly find recognise the similarity of the rewinding days. For reasons not entirely clear, Cage gets something into his blood from the alien warriors called the Alphas.

Every time an Alpha is killed, time is reset by the Omega, the ‘brain’ that governs the movement of all the alien invaders on Earth. Kill the Omega, therefore, and the war is ended.

Those who saw the movie ‘Battle Los Angeles’ starring Aaron Eckhart, will remember this exact same condition. In terms of originality, Edge of Tomorrow does not really score very high.

Yet, for all the remixing of previous plots, Edge of Tomorrow is one outstanding contemporary movie. I actually gave it a rating of 9 on IMDB.

The frequent rewinds made Groundhog Day, at times, monotonous. Edge of Tomorrow escapes the trap of monotony by making Cage transform himself into something of a fighting machine through the frequent rewinds. There are also frequent injections of humour as one will only expect from a Tom Cruise action movie.

Any story based on multiverses and time manipulation will always have paradoxes, as indeed quantum theory still has to satisfactorily explain both in ways that will be fully understandable to normal people.

In the case of Edge of Tomorrow, the major paradox will have to be the fact that Cage retains memory from the previous life; i.e. before he is killed to prompt the Omega to reset time.

The paradox, however, does not detract from the quality of the movie; as, indeed, it is on this paradox that the entire story is built. Beyond this, I will say no more as I do not want to spoil the enjoyment of anyone who has planned to go see it.

Edge of Tomorrow is fast-paced and its story gripped me enough to prevent my mind from wandering off to other things. Of course, movies of this genre do not win Academy Awards beyond special effects, which for Edge of Tomorrow are spectacular but by this time just standard fare for a big-budgeted Hollywood movie.

By this time, Cruise is no longer the testosterone-powered hot shot of ‘Top Gun,’ and HD cameras expose the lines time has carved on that once All-American good boy looks. As an action hero, though, he has lost none of the spunk.

One online article claims Edge of Tomorrow to be Cruise’s best film in 15 years. I am rather inclined to agree. This movie has nothing of his angst-filled performance in ‘Born on the Fourth of July,’ but has quality in the modern context.

In other words, well worth the money paid to the box office.

Acknowledgment: Top photo from IMDB.





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