Speilberg reigns. Cruise is forgiven. Farrell proves he can act. ILM has done it again. The story is one-of-a-kind.
This is the movie that comes to perfect as close as possible.
What it's about
We have John Anderton, played by Tom Cruise who is a cop at the Department of PreCrime all for the system of predicting murders and then stopping them before they occur. We enter the movie as if on a regular day at PreCrime with Anderton coming in to see "what's coming". Through stunning realism in special effects, the "PreCogs" (the ones that see the future) give off images which are then displayed on a circular glass fixture from which Anderton, with motions like a composer, goes through the images which are preduced by the PreCogs to find out exactly where the future murder is going to take place. Through technology, the "cops" if you will, are already able to know the name(s) of the victim and perpetrators, as well as pin-point the exact time when the crime will occur. To John, this is a regular day on the job, until Federal Agent Danny Witwer shows up to "test" The System for flaws. Naturally, John is annoyed and through smart dialogue explains to Danny why stopping a future murder is not wrong, because Danny's arguement is that they have not commited a crime...yet. Foolishly, someone gives authorization for Danny to go into the "Temple" where the PreCogs are held. Not to give anything else away, this is a bad thing.
The next day, things get worse. The PreCogs show images of John Anderton killing someone...someone he doesn't even know. All that John has is 2 minutes to run. Just run. And the rest of the beautifully written dialogue and perfectly thought through script is shown throughout the rest of this near three hour film (with trailers).
Steven Speilberg shows what it takes to make a great story even better. I have never doubted Mr. Speilberg's ability to direct a quality film (think Jurassic Park, Indiana Jones, Schindler's List), but things became questionably after last years A.I., which unfortunately is not fun to continually keep watching. This is the complete opposite of Minority Report. I can watch this film 100 more times, and still not notice all the little things which have been put in to make this an entirely believable future. The production of this film is completely unique. Many other films have mimicked advertisment campaigns of today in the future, but probably not as much as this film. Also, the Lexus that is shown, is completely believable, and it makes you wonder if they actually hired the folk down there to design a future car just for this film.
As stated earlier, I have forgiven Tom Cruise for Mi:2 and Vanilly Sky. He proves that he is actually capable of portraying a believable and likable character, as his John Anderton here. This hasn't happened in other films lately, but we don't want Cruise's character to die (think Vanilla Sky). Solid performance by Cruise, though may not be Oscar worthy, but then again, along with other people, I hope Oscar melts...
Colin Farrell. People didn't believe me when I said that this guy can act. Even after American Outlaws and Hart's War, and not to mention Tigerland. Once seeing Farrell in Minority Report, there is no question that he will have a long and successful career. Oh, and Lunchbox and I were counting "prick points" for his character, and he received about 20...you figure out why.
Max Von Sydow delivers a great role as Director Burgess; though not the creator of PreCrime, still cares alot about its survival, and this is clearly evident. Thumbs up.
The Beautiful Story
I don't want to ruin anything for you, but let me just say, this story is thought out too perfectly. There is one scene in a mall, which involves umbrellas. Through the idea for what happens is not the hardest thing to come up with, is still quite possibly the most convenient thing to ever happen on film.
ILM (the SFX)
I can keep watching the parts with Anderton skillfully shuffling through the images created by the PreCogs a thousand times, and not get bored. Cruise gets the motions across perfectly, and creates it into an artform all in itself.
As for the object effects: wow. The ships in the film, through very reminiscent of the copter from A.I. have never looked more real on screen.
Inventive and interesting. Many shots were just wow. There is one shot, where Cruise is talking to a PreCog, and she is trying to stop him from doing something which I loved. It is setup so that they are in a hug, and speaking to each other without actually facing each other or talking into the ear. It's quite hard to explain, but once you see this film, you will know which one I am talking about. Speilberg knows how to push and make us see exactly what he wants us to see. I'm a fan of good camera in a film, because if it's boring, it will detract from the overall influence of the story. In this case, I didn't have to worry about it once.
Also, Speilberg spent ALOT of time on footage for the images which the PreCogs are supposed to produce, and this is easily noticable. I also liked it when Anderton looks at one image, and it being completely useless, he just shoves it aside. Sure, no one in PreCrime had to think twice about it, but it still had to be planned out by the crew.
If the system is perfect, then this film is perfect.
Keep reading ONLY if you have already seen this film. Spoilers head. You have been warned.
So does the system work? After seeing the film, most people would say no, but I disagree.
The System works quite well actually, but it does have imperfections. The main one for instance, as stated throughout the film, is human. If humans had no involvement, it wouldn't work. But with humans running the system, errors are bound to occur, because that's our nature.
You see, as explained in the film, PreCrime functions off the images which are produced by the PreCogs. Then there was some explanation as to how they can pinpoint the exact time etc. If you think about the situation in the end with Burgess and Anderton, and how they were standing, circumstances would make sense that Anderton dies. In the images they produce, it's hard to tell, and they cut off before Burgess falls, so it's pretty much left for speculation. Thus, the victim originally said to be Anderton.
Also, the system works very well when the perpetrator isn't given a choice, meaning they don't know they will be found/arrested etc. Anderton was faced with a choice as to kill Leo Crow, but tried to change it. He didn't succeed, but it wasn't played out exactly how the PreCogs had showed it to have happened. As for Burgess' death, it still can't be told who exactly what shot, but say it was Anderton. Burgess was faced with a decision, which doesn't follow the PreCogs visions.
Now I heard some people complain that the system shouldn't work at all because what the PreCogs see in the future, is destiny. Now this isn't a matter of opinion anymore, but in this film, either destiny is not a factor, or it doesn't exist alltogether. This is because you can't change destiny, so with all of those stopped murders, it can't be destiny.
UPDATE: I would just like to point out a mistake. After watching Minority Report again, I noticed that the images about Anderton's death were clear. So disregard that paragraph. The other two still stand though.
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