7:00 PM, 25th May, 2013
In 2005, Kosinski, with the help of Arvid Nelson, began writing a science fiction graphic novel called “Oblivion”. Fast forward eight years and, after directing one feature film (TRON: Legacy), he finds himself helming a big-budget screen adaptation of his own work, ordering around actors like Tom Cruise and Morgan Freeman. Set against lavishly created landscapes of the barren Earth’s surface and backdrops of spacecraft floating high in the atmosphere – and costing an estimated $100 million – this is science fiction at the expensive end of town.
Cruise as Jack Harper is a man doing very important work. Harper is one of few remaining drone repairmen on Earth, responsible for scouring the Earth’s surface from the skies for the last remaining vital resources on the land below. A large section of the land (including a futuristic New York City lying in ruins) rests in devastation after decades of war with the enemy Scavs. As described by Harper, “We won the war, but they destroyed half the planet”.
During a mission Harper discovers a downed spacecraft which contains more than he bargained for, leading him to re-evaluate everything that he thought he knew while also putting the existence of humanity in his hands. Rather than a trite action or survival story, Oblivion contains elements of mystery and betrayal that add to the jeopardy faced by Harper.
Stylistically, there are influences from The Fifth Element, Minority Report and The Matrix but overall, Oblivion is a big step up from Cruise’s last venture into sci-fi territory, War of the Worlds; which is a good thing.
9:20 PM, 25th May, 2013
A mild-manner businessman (Jason Bateman) discovers that his identity has been stolen and embarks on a cross-country quest to bring the thief to justice. Little does he know that the deceptively harmless-looking woman (Melissa McCarthy) who has stolen his identity will stop at nothing to continue living it up at his expense.