Monday, September 29, 2008

Eagle Eye

Originally uploaded by divxplanet
I have loved DJ Caruso’s films since I was introduced to his debut feature film The Salton Sea when I was in college. I see a lot of talent in DJ Caruso and I have been waiting for another film to match the level of talent he showed in his debut feature film. Eagle Eye is not that film, but that does not mean it’s not an enjoyable film. Anything by DJ is worth watching at least once.

What I did love about Eagle Eye is that I finally got to see DJ do a straight out action film; they gave him a budget and let him blow up anything he wanted – and he does. The only problem with the film is kind of the problem with all action films nowadays, the cutting is so chaotic during the action bits that it becomes very muddled and hard to follow. More than once I thought the protagonists had their car crashed, shot or set on fire only to find out that was a different car. It was rather annoying, but most action films have been having this issue since the Jason Bourne series hit the cinemas. This film actually reminds me of very early Michael Bay films - you know, when he still had a plot to his movies.

To me Eagle Eye was a little predictable on one level, because when a certain piece of the plot was revealed I guessed a big chunk of what was going on – but I see more movies than most people so that’s kind of understandable. It felt a little to me like 2001 meets Patriot Games.

What does work is the actors. This is a conspiracy theory that does not have a lot of time to develop deep characters, so your actors have to have the right chemistry from scene one so you as an audience member can wait to learn about the characters as you go along with the story. Michelle Monaghan & Shia LaBeouf have chemistry. They bring a vivacity to the screen that shows one of DJ’s true talents – casting the right people in the right parts.

All in all, Eagle Eye is not a perfect film, but it is what an action movie should be: a smart, fun adrenaline rush that keeps you guessing and makes you want to see what is going to happen next. Just be prepared for the political commentary.

Director: DJ Caruso
Writers: John Glenn, Travis Wright, Hillary Seitz & Dan McDermott
Jerry Shaw: Shia LaBeouf
Rachel Holloman: Michelle Monaghan
Zoe Perez: Rosario Dawson
Defense Secretary Callister: Michael Chiklis
Agent Toby Grant: Ethan Embry
Agent Thomas Morgan: Billy Bob Thornton
William Shaw: William Sadler

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