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Elysium Review

 
 
Overview
 

Director: Neil Blomkamp
 
Actors: Matt Damon, Sharlto Copley, Jodie Foster, William Fichtner
 
MPAA Rating: 15
 
Release Date: 21st Aug 2013
 
Genre:
 
Plot
 
 
 
 
 


 
Cinematography
 
 
 
 
 


 
Acting
 
 
 
 
 


 
Soundtrack
 
 
 
 
 


 
Direction
 
 
 
 
 


 
Total Score
 
 
 
 
 
3.5/5


User Rating
7 total ratings

 


Bottom Line

The visuals are terrific and Blomkamp manages to convincingly bring the world to life without going overboard – but perhaps had he been a little flashier then we may have been distracted away from the gluttony of plot holes, thin characterisation and overall lack of depth.

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Posted September 1, 2013 by

 
Full Review
 
 

Having satisfactorily slammed apartheid with his 2009 cult hit District 9; director/screenwriter Neil Blomkamp has taken off the gloves and is swinging wildly at every social injustice imaginable with the summer blockbuster Elysium.

In the year 2154, the social elite have fled a war-torn, polluted shell of the planet we call home and have set up shop on an unspoiled space station called Elysium; leaving behind a population doomed to fester away on a planet-wide slum where hospitals are over-run, crime is rampant and opportunities to earn an honest crust are sparse and dangerous.

We don’t see much of the titular paradise in-depth, with the chief exception being a pretty nifty gadget they’ve invented which cures all ills within seconds, and from very early on it’s clear that this will be the main plot device behind our protagonists desire to somehow get “up there”.

Here, Matt Damon plays a hero more beaten, battered and victimised than any of his career, and he does it convincingly, even if he is fairly lacking in depth; though that’s a problem much of the film struggles with too.  Standing in his way is Elysium’s Secretary of Defence played by a very peculiar Jodie Foster who uncomfortably bad performance threatened to derail the movie every time she was on screen.  In complete contrast, her hired thug Kruger – brought to life by an almost unrecognisable Sharlto Copley – is both brilliantly menacing and thoroughly captivating.

The visuals are terrific and Blomkamp manages to convincingly bring the world to life without going overboard – but perhaps had he been a little flashier then we may have been distracted away from the gluttony of plot holes, thin characterisation and overall lack of depth.  I’m still undecided as to whether a man simply wanting to live is a strong enough motivation for this sort of movie or not, but it certainly doesn’t help in terms of adding the sense of urgency this film really needed.

It’s never a good sign when you find yourselves rolling your eyes slightly during what is supposed to be the triumphant final scene, but this is symptomatic of a film which seems more focused on pushing its many agendas and subtexts than providing any form of satisfactory or even interesting resolution.

For the most part though it is an enjoyable ride – there are some fantastic set-pieces, some interesting concepts and a couple of strong performances in Damon and  Copley; but the complete lack of depth means that like this years Oblivion – this film becomes almost instantly forgettable once the credits have rolled.

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Miky Morrison

 
Jaded gamer and heavily opinionated glutton of all things entertainment. Without those people in the black box that sits in the corner of my room my life would be utterly without meaning. Founder of AFK Magazine (both times) and co-founder of Split Infinity Radio.


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