out of 4
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Review by Susan Granger
4 stars out of 4
Just as Picasso went through his Blue Period, both Steven Spielberg
("A.I.") and Tom Cruise ("Vanilla Sky") are obviously into their dark, morally
ambiguous sci-fi period, this time posing the challenging question: What if it
was possible to stop a murder before it happened?
In this fast-paced action thriller, it's 2054 and Cruise is a haunted,
angst-ridden Washington D.C. detective who works for an experimental Precrime
Unit that uses a trio of psychics, or Pre-Cogs, to track down and convict
perpetrators before they can commit a fatal crime. Suddenly, he becomes a
suspect in the premonition of the murder of a total stranger and is hunted by
the same Orwellian technology he's used on others. Could Pre-Cog Samantha
Morton, who is tortured by a series of grotesque homicidal visions, be wrong? Is
there a flaw in the system? Or is there some eerie, elusive secret that Cruise
must discover? Perhaps he's only running away from himself. After all,
"everybody runs." As a rival federal agent, Colin Farrell is on his trail, while
Max Von Sydow, Lois Smith and Kathryn Morris lend stalwart support. The acting
is uniformly excellent!
Like "Blade Runner," this Philip K. Dick short story is boldly adapted
for the screen by Scott Frank and Jon Cohen. Steven Spielberg has never made a
murder mystery/film noir before and, working with production designer Alex
McDowell, photographer Janusz Kaminski and composer John Williams, he creates a
stunning, complex vision with the sleek, stylish suspense of a quirky whodunit -
plus an amazing car chase along a vertical highway. Spielberg is a great
cinematic storyteller! On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "Minority Report"
is a provocative, compelling 10, prompting discussions on morality and ethics,
along with crime and punishment.
Copyright © 2002 Susan Granger
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