Thoughts on Oblivion

As a big fan of the sci-fi genre, it often saddens me to see the same old Aliens attacking the earth and wearing slightly different costumes every time. Somehow someone always turns out to be the hero and saves planet earth. All the innovation on the part of filmmakers is spent on the guns, artillery and destruction images. For me, this doesn’t work at all. What I desire to see in a Sci-fi movie- more importantly a movie dealing with Outer Space are images- Strong images that emphasizes on the idea of the life beyond earth or far from earth. This is where 2001: A space Odyssey succeeded in an almost unparalleled way. Those visuals that showed the outer space or should I say the Director’s (or the novelist’s) imagination of the outer space. Those images and the strong focus and pause on each and every image are what made it so much special. Similarly Danny Boyle’s Sunshine or Duncan jones’s Moon worked for me big time- both have them having strong focus on the visuals and done subtly.

Watching Oblivion was a great experience for me. It’s quite different from what’s shown in the Trailers. It’s such a breath of fresh air from the loud action zero story science fiction which have less science in the fiction. The most striking feature of the film is its visuals. From Tom cruise’s Aircraft to the monitoring system to his station where he lives are all simply stunning, There’s a scene where the lead actress goes bare body in a swimming pool- Trust me if you will- the beauty of that scene is not the actress’s body but the swimming pool. The Images of a nuclear struck Earth and the mini twists in the story compliment the visuals beautifully. It’s a long 2 hour plus film and believe me, I was ready to watch it again once it got over.

The story is very good if not great and even though I could guess the twists and turns, I liked it that they were there. The first 30 minutes and the last 15 minutes are visually stunning. Tom Cruise is perfect for this role. It’s amazing how calmly he portrayed a character which could have been done horribly wrong by some other actors. Tom displays the right emotions and manages to depict his attachment to his planet through his monologues and gestures.

Oblivion is a great film for me. Not because it has an exceptional story to tell but because the path the filmmaker chose to tell it. There could have been a lot of noise and unnecessary activity in this film but it remains subtle and does the job in a brilliant way. Love it for the story , love it for the background score, love it for discovering the now getting lost emotion of “Man’s love for his planet” and love it for the visuals. I hope there are more such Sci-fi movies in the future.

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14 Comments
  1. sputnik 7 years ago

    I don’t usually like sci-fi films much either for the same reasons that you mentioned. The ones I liked are The Matrix, The Terminator 2 and The Astronaut’s Wife.

    Will check out Oblivion. Tried to watch 2001: A Space Odyssey some 12 years back. Watched part of it and stopped because I could not understand much with hardly any dialogues. Will try to watch that again.

  2. Bored 7 years ago

    This was a very poor film unless one is new to this genre. The visuals were good but no story, and terrible acting just made it a yawn fest.
    Tom Cruise at this stage is much like our SRK – they still have overseas clout, but a mockery in their domestic markets – and the terrible choice of films dont help either.

    Morgan Freeman was wasted here …

    • Author
      Suprabh 7 years ago

      Morgan Freeman is at Amitabh Bachchan now. He is wasted in almost every movie with a tiny no-significance role.

      You seem like a pro of this genre..I would like to know.. What do you think of movies like 2001: A space odyssey or Solayris or Sunshine or even Moon or Contact?

      • sputnik 7 years ago

        Good you mentioned Contact. I liked Contact a lot too.

  3. ank_16n 7 years ago

    I have been a big Tom Cruise fan…i have seen almost all his movies even past few releases like Jack Reacher, Valkyire ,MI:4 ….though i didn’t liked Knight and Day(its hindi remake Starring Hrithik n Katrina Bang Bang will Flop big time IMO bad choice to remake)…

    I have Heard many people saying Tom Cruise isn’t that force to recon with Robert Downey Jr has replaced him…
    then let me tell them just 1.5 years back there was a clash Between MI 4 and Sherlok Holmes 2 the result was for all to see MI 4 had beaten HM2 all over the Globe badly..!!

    Now coming back to Oblivion i have not seen it yet but have heard mixed Response for it….while some liking it n some didn’t..will watch it i get the good Print 🙂

    TOM CRUISE Last 5 Movies at BOXOFFICE—-

    Oblivion— BUDGET $120 million
    USA— $80 million and still running in over 2800 + theatres
    Rest World– $150 million with JAPAN n CHINA yet to open.

    WW Total- $240 million and counting..!!

    Jacj Reacher– BUDGET= $60 million
    USA— $80 million
    Rest World– $136 million

    WW Total- $216 million

    Mission Impossible:4—BUDGET $145 Million
    USA— $210 million
    Rest World– $486 million

    WW Total- $696 million

    Knight & Day–BUDGET $117 million
    USA— $77 million
    Rest World– $185 million

    WW Total- $261 million

    Valkyrie– BUDGET $75 million
    USA— $83 million
    Rest World– $117 million

    WW Total- $200 million

    • hithere 7 years ago

      He is no longer a force in US. Internationally action movies still do well.

      • ank_16n 7 years ago

        can u tell me who is a force in US now…???

  4. Serenzy 7 years ago

    Ank16,

    Even I think Bang Bang might Flop(on the basis of Knight & Day).

    But Sid Anand has made – Good Glossy Movies(except AA which was Crap) and the Star Factor may work for it.
    Let’s see.

    • Baba 7 years ago

      KND was hit in India though

      • ank_16n 7 years ago

        no KND was not a hit in India…it was a FLOP in INDIA..!!

        http://www.boxofficeindia.com/showProd.php?itemCat=366&catName=MjAxMA==

        it contains Data for Hindi Dubbed version and English version…
        Hindi version was FLOP while English version was BELOW AVERAGE..!!

        ____________

        @Serenzy—yes the Star factor will get Big Weekend but its not releasing on HOLIDAYS so if bad it won’t Sustain….every one can’t be lucky to have his bad films release on 6-7 HOLIDAY PERIOD..!!

        • Baba 7 years ago

          didnt remember its verdict on BOI but i remember some positive articles by BOI on it

  5. Author
    Suprabh 7 years ago

    This is the summary from Rottentomatoes

    “Visually striking but thinly scripted, Oblivion benefits greatly from its strong production values and an excellent performance from Tom Cruise.”

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