By Kimball Tanner – FOX21 Film Critic
Oblivion (2013) *** Out of Four Stars
Directed by: Joseph Kosinski
Written by: Joseph Kosinski, Karl Gajdusek, Michael Arndt
Starring: Tom Cruise, Morgan Freeman, Olga Kurylenko, Andrea Riseborough, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Melissa Leo, Zoe Bell
Earth: 2077. What’s left of the human civilization has evacuated after an alien race attacks decimating most of the known world. Humans, having won the war, are forced to colonize Saturn’s moon, Titan, thanks to the nuclear fallout leaving only two humans on Earth – Cruise and Riseborough – to maintain resource-collecting equipment meant to help with re-colonization of humanity’s new home. Their job: ensure the completion of their mission to collect as many resources as possible and vacate Earth once and for all. That is, until a space capsule crashes with human survivors shedding new light on what really happened.
Definitely a breath of fresh air, though not the sci-fi epic I envisioned it would be,Oblivion manages to be a compelling thriller with a cautionary tale reminiscent of a Twilight Zone episode. Cruise, playing engineer Jack Harper, (yes, Cruise plays another character named Jack) is uniform as the hero who begins to question his sanity as his world (and past) begin to unravel as he searches for the truth. Thanks to slick production, polished visual effects and an excellent adaptation of director Kosinski’s own graphic novel, Oblivion definitely ranks as one of the better summer movies released, so far. Bravo, Hollywood, bravo.
Running time: 124 minutes
Rated PG-13: For sci-fi action/violence, brief strong language, some sensuality/nudity.