Sunday, 27 September 2009

Film Review: SURROGATES (2009)

Director: Jonathan Mostow
Running time: 88 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 12A

Watched at the cinema Saturday 26th September 2009.


This film was based on a graphic novel, which I must point out I haven’t read, so no comparisons here, just a film review. Set in a future where people live their lives through robotic ‘Surrogates’. The people stay at home and control their ‘Surrogates’ from there with no pain and with certain augmentations, you can be anyone you like. Some people are against the use of ‘Surrogates’ and choose to live in human-only enclaves lead by ‘The Prophet’, an outspoken opponent of these mechanical ‘monstrosities’. The creator of the ‘Surrogates, Canter has been removed from the company he created and has been living in exile ever since.

Tom Greer is a Boston detective, and like all cops, he uses a ‘Surrogate’ to perform his daily duties. One day he and his partner, Peters, are called to what seems a routine hit and run, only to find that two of the victims were murdered. The people controlling the ‘Surrogates’ were killed by some kind of electrical pulse fired from an unknown weapon. When it transpires that one of the victims was the son of Canter, the inventor of the ‘Surrogates’, the case moves up to a higher level. The perpetrator is identified and Greer chases him into the human-only enclave, where he escapes and Greer’s ‘Surrogate is destroyed. He has no choice but to leave his home and investigate the crime in person…

An interesting film, it reminds me a little of I, Robot in places, with its squeaky clean vision of the future, a far cry from Babylon A.D. which I recently reviewed. Having said that, it was a good production, with not too much reliance on CGI. I particularly liked the way they achieved the plastic look to the ‘Surrogates’, you knew when you were looking at one on screen. Great performances from Bruce Willis as Ton Greer, Radha Mitchell as Peters, Rosamund Pike as Maggie (Greer’s wife), Boris Kodjoe as Stone (Greer’s boss), James Francis Ginty as Canter’s ‘Surrogate’, James Cromwell as the real Canter and Ving Rhames as The Prophet. Over all, it was an exciting sci-fi thriller that I very much enjoyed, not a great intellectual piece, but entertaining none the less.

My score: 7/10

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