Newest Review: ... a glass on top of it, ringing a set of numbers. Astro- physicist John Koestler (Cage) begins to investigate the numbers and uncovers the di... more
You'd be better off not Knowing!
Member Name: Kat1987
Advantages: Good ideas, excellent child actors, dramatic visuals in places.
Disadvantages: Poorly executed and the worst ending EVER!
Released: 2009, Run time: 121 minutes, Genre: Science Fiction
Film Only Review.
It's 1959 and the children at William Dawes Elementary School have been asked to draw pictures of what they imagine the future to be like. The pictures will be placed in a time capsule to be opened in 50 years time. The strange and awkward Lucinda Embry (Lara Robinson) frantically scrawls a list of seemingly irrelevant numbers which represents her version of the future-are these just the scribblings of a troubled youngster or are they something more?
Fast forward fifty years and it's time for the time capsule's unveiling. Each child is given a drawing and Lucinda Embry's ends up in the hands of Caleb Koestler (Chandler Canterbury). He takes it home where his drunk, grief stricken father (Nicholas Cage) accidentally places a glass on top of it, ringing a set of numbers. Astro- physicist John Koestler (Cage) begins to investigate the numbers and uncovers the disturbing significance that they hold. He looks up Lucinda Embry to find out more but is shocked to find out she is dead. He turns to her daughter Diana (Rose Byrne) and granddaughter Abby (Lara Robinson, again) for help. Together they embark on a journey that challenges perceptions on religion, science, death and fate. Do we really want to find out what our future holds? How much of what we do has already been written? And who are the mysterious 'whispering' men?
Wow, that sounds interesting doesn't it? That is exactly what I thought when I sat down to watch this film. As a science fiction fan this sounded perfect for me and for the majority of the film I was gripped however it all came crashing down in the last thirty minutes- this is without a doubt the worst film ending I have ever seen. A film with massive potential ruined by an ill thought out ending.
The film starts off well, there are some events that are predictable but the 'hows' and 'whys' keep you guessing so I didn't mind this so much. I don't profess to know much about cinematography or graphics but I can say that elements of this film are visually stunning- the subway scene for example. The orchestral music is fitting for a film of this type. It is loud in places which is great if you like cinema style sounds but I spent a lot of time turning the sound down when the music played and up when people were speaking which ruined it a bit for me.
The characters are likeable. Nicholas Cage does a good job at portraying a troubled intellectual and the child actors, Chandler Canterbury and Lara Robinson create a great sense of uncomfortable spookiness. I feel that the character of Diana could have been played by anyone, I personally like Rose Byrne but wouldn't describe this particular performance as memorable.
Up until the last thirty minutes this film had done a good job at building suspense, creating atmosphere and setting the scene. The story line had posed many questions and I was geared up for a spectacular explanation......that never came. I won't reveal how it ends in case you decide to watch it but I will say it was the equivalent of reading a novel and the ending being 'they woke up and it was all a dream'. It's that bad.
So overall, I am disappointed in this film. The writer, director and cast had reeled me in and then robbed me of an ending. It had biblical, scientific and philosophical undertones. The perfect premise for a science fiction film in my opinion. It had great ideas but it failed to execute them and so I wouldn't recommend it. It shall forever be known to me as the film with the worst ending.
Summary: A film of two halfs. It could have been great but it wasn't-not recommended.