Jack and his mission partner Victoria share the remote observation tower on Earth, watching for enemy Scavs and maintaining the fleet of drones which patrol the lifeless Earth, its surface devastated after decades of war with the alien Scavs. When he discovers a crashed spacecraft with contents that bring into question everything he believed about the war – including the surviving human, Julia, a woman he vaguely recalls – Jack’s reality is turned upside down and he can no longer trust Sally, the face of distant Mission Control.
Oblivion looks great with it’s desolate landscapes and partly buried architecture that has degraded to almost nothing after a war with aliens sixty years ago. The initial ominous presence of the Scavs is also well done. I couldn’t help thinking Cruise was just a little bit like Charlton Heston in Omega Man, especially in the early scenes where he’s maintaining drones and being observed from the shadows. However it doesn’t take long until Oblivion feels like a Sci-Fi jukebox playing cover versions of all your favorites. It borrows from so many films they would all be impossible to mention. However, the influence of Duncan Jones’ ‘Moon’ is pretty obvious, but instead of the Moon it’s set on Earth – They still have two weeks until the end of their missions tho. Don’t worry, that’s not a spoiler, because there’s about a hundred other ideas ripped straight from other Sci-Fi greats too. I know that no story can be completely original, but the voice can be, and this is just what this film lacks, a voice, a vision and a soul. This is what separates movies like this from the classics that they are drawing so heavily upon. Oblivion is a good, fun and enjoyable and perhaps if I hadn’t seen ‘Moon’ only a couple of weeks before I may have rated it much higher.
Review out of five stars: ★★★ stars
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Please note: The trailer contaisn spoilers. Why would they do that?
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