31
Jul
08

Vantage Point on Blu-ray review

Vantage Point - Blu-ray

I’m going to keep this review as spoiler-free as I can, so I’m not be divulging the plot twist that is supposed to be the highlight of this movie. Partly because in my opinion it’s not worth actually telling people, and everyone should get the chance to shout at the screen Whiskey-Tango-Foxtrot at that juncture.

But to be honest it wasn’t the only time I was forced to voice my incredulity as the events portrayed in this movie, whole sections make about as much sense as Amy Whinehouse does after a complete bender.

If you didn’t catch the promotions for this movie the premise is simple, if not borrowed from at least three other movies I can think of. We’re presented with 23 minutes or time which usually runs to about 10 minutes of screentime, in which the same events are seen from a different perspective. With each ‘vantage point’ we get more information about the characters, their motivations and additional clues to what’s actually going on. Which, unsurprisingly, isn’t what we’re initially drawn to think.

It starts really well, with Sigourney Weaver doing her best uber-bitch TV producer covering the anti-terrorist conference the President is about to address. She’s great, and I could watch her knitting for 90 minutes and find meaning in it. But sadly, she’s only really in that slice, and we never return to her later in the movie.

What really begins to grind is that the majority of this film is filled with other actors that bored me to tears, namely the gnarled Dennis Quad, lightweight Mathew Fox and the totally unbelievable American tourist Forest Whittaker.

When the clock had rewound three times I was getting edgy, by the fifth I wanted to shout ‘get on with this’, because most of the information we’re fed in each slice is irrelevant and falls into the category of obviously ‘filling’.

Eventually even the director gets bored with doing this, and it progresses normally for the horribly contrived and predictable ending. The one that grinds the most in this is Forest Whitakers character, who’s dumber than a bag of spanners. His main function in the movie it appears is to promote Sony’s new HDV camcorder, which he brandishes like he’s making a home movie of another planet. It’s so important to him, that within 30 seconds of being almost blown to pieces he picks it up and carries on filming. It seems the supersonic shockwave that just tore people to pieces around him can’t damage cameras, specifically those made by Sony.

But let’s be straight here, the entire movie is predated on people who do stupid or irrational things or react in totally unrealistic ways, so Forest Whitaker’s ‘Howard’ character isn’t exactly alone here.

The tagline for this movie was 8 Strangers. 8 Points of View. 1 Truth. It should have been 1 idea, 1 product placement, 0 new ideas.

It’s a little unfair to expect this, but does the Blu-ray edition make anything more of this? Well, the lovely Spanish architecture that forms the backdrop, which is actually in mostly in Mexico, looks great given the subtle colours and clean imagery the extra data density over DVD on offer. The sound is again richer, but I’d wished they’d come up with something better for the incidental music than ripping off Bourne, yet again.

The extras are mildly interesting, especially the one that allows each of the characters to tracked by GPS, ideal for those who are spatially confused.

This isn’t a good movie, and I was left with the distinct feeling that this was a potentially interesting idea that got mushed in the creative process.

Movie: 2 out of 5
Extras: 3 out of 5

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