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Source Code
BLU-RAY disk
Jul 21, 2011 By: J.A. Hamilton
Source Code order download
Director:
Duncan Jones

Actors:
Jake Gyllenhaal
Michelle Monaghan
Vera Farmiga

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
A military helicopter pilot wakes up to find himself communicating with a television screen in what appears to be some sort of underground bunker. He comes to find out that he's part of a government led covert mission to uncover the identity of a terrorist bomber whose eye's set upon Chicago, but soon discovers there's more to this mission than he's being told.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
I've been a big fan of Jake Gyllenhaal since DONNIE DARKO. Now within the ten years since DARKO, Jake's had more than a few great roles to be proud of. There's been a lot of experimentation with these roles as well and I respect any actor who has the balls to go after what he wants. The early buzz for SOURCE CODE was mixed and the marketing for the film a touch weak, but I had a blast with this flick from start to finish.

The premise, despite being attached to relatively common thread (the government experimenting with soldiers both alive and dead), is lobbed out into centerfield in a fresh way that's both intelligent and engrossing. Having an eight minute window to find a bomb, discover the perpetrator and foil the crime is a hell of a lot to bite off for anyone, military soldier or no. Not to mention how much of a mind-f*ck the whole thing is for our main character to begin with. I get him freaking out a bit, but I found it odd that this Christina chick hanging with him wasn't bothered by the fact that her friend wakes up and doesn't know who he is, or the fact that later on he knows everything that's happening before it happens. Her character wasn't very bright and that bothered me, yet the film itself was smart which more than made up for it.

I thoroughly enjoyed the idea behind the source code itself, it's ingenious. I picked up on the idea of it before it was explained guessing that it had something to do with two people's brainwaves, souls or auras tapping into one another resulting in "something" that the government wanted to harness and use to their advantage. I dig that here just as I dug in UNIVERSAL SOLDIER. Sure, it's not quite the same thing but at the same time it is. I'm not sure how I feel about the government using dead, dying or live soldiers for scientific experimentations, whether it's for the better of mankind or not, and I certainly see why they'd keep it a secret if said experiments were/are going on today. The families of these men and women (along with the media) would have a field day with this, but you can't help but wonder if (all things considered) it's a valid theory.

SOURCE CODE is an edge of your seat thriller that delivers much better than most thrillers I've watched recently, specifically because it keeps you guessing and has wondrous flow for a flick that re-uses the same eight minutes numerous times over. Now I've heard some critics attack the validity of the end result, which of course I won't spoil, and to that I say "c'mon folks, it's a movie after all." I enjoyed where this film went, though on the subject of parallel realities and such, I do feel that though the idea of this was mentioned it was by no means built upon very soundly. They could have done a bit more with it in my opinion but then again, this would also feed the fire when it came down to credibility and logic, the main two things people were criticising it for. Just don't think about it too much and I'm sure you'll enjoy the ride.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary: This is the sort of commentary I enjoy; one that has the director (Duncan Jones), the writer (Ben Ripley) as well as the lead actor (Jake Gyllenhall) all together to shoot the shit. There's lots to talk about and debate here and the boys play off one another rather well.

Access: Source Code: This interesting feature does a couple things. One options includes the old "pop-up video" deal that gives you trivia and fun facts as you play through the film. There are also a couple cool cast interviews as well as some expert input on time travel (no, not from Doc Brown). So in light of that little tidbit, I guess this flick must have made China's ban list. Sorry, I just couldn't help myself.

Previews: There are a slew of trailers as well as some BD-LIVE content if you're hooked up to the web.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
You can't get much better than this in thriller department, and with stellar acting, action and a fairly original plot to boot, sign me up baby! Finding a film that's not a remake of some calibre is becoming more and more rare these days so we have to covet these gems like the rarities they are.
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+0
9:03AM on 07/22/2011

Nice

Looking forward to getting it. Thanks for the review.
Looking forward to getting it. Thanks for the review.
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10:05PM on 07/21/2011
Agreed! Really good thriller! Original and imaginative. Good performances too. But, coming from the director of "Moon" that's no surprise!
Agreed! Really good thriller! Original and imaginative. Good performances too. But, coming from the director of "Moon" that's no surprise!
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