2 1/2 Stars
The first pairing of Willis and Rhames since 1994’s ‘PULP FICTION’ is heavy on mood and light on action. Set sometime in a future where people experience the world solely through the use of machines that resemble supreme versions of themselves (the surrogates of the title). Things are ideal until a group of users die while jacked into their avatars. Rhames plays a dread-locked prophet and leader of the resistance, a group of humans living on surrogate – free reservations. Willis is a Boston Detective investigating the murder of a young corporate heir, which leads to a web of government cover-ups and conspiracies. A refreshingly relaxed performance by Bruce Willis is handled nicely by director Jonathan Mostow, who along with cinematographer Oliver Wood gives the film an elegantly textured look, with good use of color and stylized lighting throughout. Unfortunately the story which is a mixture of elements borrowed from ‘I ROBOT’,’THE 6TH DAY’, and ‘MINORITY REPORT’, isn’t up to the level of talent in front of and behind the camera. It’s basically a cop procedural/who-done-it? And it’s a fairly boring one at that. An atmospheric score by Richard Marvin tries to sell the illusion that something ‘big’ is happening; when in fact very little occurs. All of these elements equal out to a strangely unsatisfying viewing experience.
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