Saturday, October 03, 2015

Oblivion (movie review)

I'll compare this movie with Zardoz right off the bat.  Tom Cruise (vs. Sean Connery) is an outlander and he has the same job Sean had:  do the bidding of the giant Sky Head and kill all the Brutals, though in this case the face of authority is not sculpted into the Sky Shape, but shows up on screen instead.

Her name is Sally and she has the same superior "I'm in charge here" attitude as Zardoz.  Our hero has a rebellious streak but it's his housemate, Victoria, who gets to deal with Sally and they get along quite well.

In both films, our hero becomes suspicious, then resentful, and through study manages to penetrate a layer of lies and deceptions that have been perpetrated against him.

The plot comes together like a puzzle, with pieces coming in out of order.

I think Bucky fans, who know of Utopia or Oblivion, will appreciate the irony of having a Tetrahedron as the symbol of the New World Order.

Mad Max, 2001 Space Odyssey, Star Trek and The Matrix, all have some themes echoed herein.

Oblivion, literally rendered as a world without personal memories, is perpetuated by a human disloyalty to the Earth and a fascination with the possibility of an off-world existence, an after life (underworld) in the realm of Saturn.

Belief in an after life makes the current tour of duty seem OK.  This world is but a doorway to the next.

Jack Harper (Tom's character) is haunted by dreams from his personal past.

As in The Matrix, he has lived many lives in some eternal return without actually solving the puzzle and realizing the nature of his imprisonment, let alone acquiring the tools and allies to attempt escape.

Events set in motion before the memory wipe are what trigger him to at least partially re-awaken.

Obviously I'm avoiding telling the whole story, in hopes of letting viewers puzzle it out themselves.