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|Index||307 reviews in total|
Next is a much better movie than I expected to see, having read some of
the reviews which called it disjointed and silly. Quite to the
contrary, I found it deeply absorbing. I quickly picked up on the
elements which must have caused some reviewers to accuse it of being
disjointed, and began enjoying them. Of course silliness is part of any
sci-fi story, we suspend our critical senses in that regard or we do
not become sci-fi fans.
I single out one performer among a fine cast. Julianne Moore has really established herself as *the* deadpan action queen. She was a better Agent Starling than Jody Foster was, and she's a terrific, dominant presence in this film. Kudos to her for propelling herself to the top of a tough genre. She makes films more interesting to watch, by dint of her strong performances.
I read Phillip K. Dick's "The Golden Man" many years ago and still remember a lot of it. When I first began hearing about this movie I immediately flashed to it and wondered if this was a movie of that intriguing story. The answers are "yes" and "no." "The Golden Man" is a much more ordinary story, but with resounding insights on the consequences of his existence. And his skin was a compellingly attractive rich golden hue, which helped make him irresistible to women. None of that fits this new story, and was properly omitted.
What is translated so well from the written page to the screen is the government's intense interest in him (although for different reasons), its efforts to get him under official control, and the exceeding difficulty of doing so. And of course, the story ends in a wholly different way than the movie, a very satisfying and inevitable conclusion that bolsters Mr. Dick's reputation for opening the future to us.
*** OK, ONE LITTLE SPOILER ALERT *** READ NO FURTHER (unless you don't mind) ***
I just have to add, the flurry of action sequences which come like a staccato rendition of The Flight Of The Bumblebee during his escape from custody, is thoroughly delectable and brought more than one involuntary "Ha!" from the audience I saw it with, including from me. It's one of the tastiest treats in the film.
And finally, yes, I too wish I knew who the heck these terrorists were and what the heck they were trying to accomplish with their nefarious plot. But I guess that's the brave new world we live in. We just don't get to hear the bad guys' dialogue, their reasons for doing the things they do. In that way Next is giving us another insight, not dropping us cold as others have complained. The only legitimate beef I agree with is the entirely unnecessary and just plain goofy Nicholas Cage business during the final pursuit. It looks like it must have been an idea of somebody too high up among the moguls to deny, but it is a definite distraction causing "Huh? What?" moments when the action is at its most intense.
All in all, a feather in everybody's cap and a movie I fully recommend without reservation. Drama, humor, really fine action sequences, twists, great characters. As baseball great Yogi Berra once said, " Don't miss it if you can."
Cris Johnson has the ability to see 2 minutes into his own future. He
works a low-level magic act in Las Vegas with this secret ability and
also makes money gambling. However, an FBI Agent sees his uncanny
ability to foresee the immediate future and tries to get him to foil a
The basic plot outline above isn't wholly exciting and can initially smell of outdated Cold War plot lines. And seeing that it is in the hands of Hollywood in the form of big budget action vehicle it will definitely turn many viewers off. The recent highly contrived sci-fi action movie "Deja Vu" is also another potential unfair strike against this movie. But, be clear of doubt, this film is actually good and it succeeds in being intriguing and not cheesy at the same time - completely unlike the "Deja Vu." "Next" leaves a lot to the audience's imagination and certain things are there just for you to accept on the basis that this is a movie - no lengthy pseudo-science speeches here. The movie also makes very good use of computer effects - there aren't many and the few that there are, aren't awful looking like director Lee Tamahori's last feature "XXX: The State of the Union." Johnson's clairvoyance is shown in a clever way and the story takes several nice turns. There is the stock Hollywood romantic angle here, but cheesiness is mercifully spared as it is not over done, but actually played out humorously in certain scenes.
Then the kicker is the ending, which I dare not give away, and it is a real breath of fresh air. It leaves you a lot to think about and that ultimately ends this film with, not a bang which many people might expect from a big-budget action-fest. No, definitely not a bang, but a hum. That hum will stay with you for a while after you finish watching as you think about what happened and what may still happen. --- 8/10
Rated PG-13 for violence
Next is one of those films that requires a second viewing. There's a
lot going on and the plot doubles back on itself multiple times.
Granted, there are some plot holes and some motivations are suspect,
but overall it tends to entertain and keep you going more often than
Nicolas Cage plays Cris Johnson, a man who can see two minutes into the future and predict what will happen. The problem is that the future constantly shifts and every action will change the next future. The fact that he can only see up to 2 minutes ahead also limits him somewhat. It does however help greatly in his magic career as a Las Vegas showman. It also helps when playing small time gambling. Unfortunately, it has gotten the attention of the FBI who want Cris to help them stop a Russia nuclear bomb from being detonated on American soil.
As I said, there's a lot of backtracking in the story, which may serve to confuse some but is really important to the storyline. Cage turns in a great performance as the slightly eccentric seeming Cris. Julianne Moore is fine as a hard nosed FBI agent and Jessica Biel does all she can with a somewhat thankless role as the love interest.
Overall, I really enjoyed Next. It's a fun sci-fi film that is the perfect start of the summer season.
I completely disagree with the last review. This movie is one of the best action movies I've seen in a while. The action is not overwhelming, and all the scenes are well done. The best part of all is that, unlike most movies these days, the previews don't give away every good scene. Given, the previews give away almost all of the entire plot, but we are talking about the same author who wrote Minority Report. So, why not a 10? The only downside would have to be that some of the acting is not as good as you would hope. Jessica Biel is not unconvincing as a love interest, but she's not entirely convincing. The plot is somewhat predictable, but there are surprises. Don't forget, this is an ACTION film. Not a romantic comedy; not a love story. It serves its point as an action film, and it serves it well. Very well, indeed.
A lot of people say it was boring with no plot twists. Well they must of been watching a different movie. First the ending was really unexpected and you don't see it coming. Second there was a LOT of suspense. You get so into the movie the time goes by very fast. The movie runs smoothly and I didn't see anything left out. And the way they use his ability to see into the future doesn't confuse, or get rid of suspense. The end of the movie what makes it great and no one saw it coming. The locations in the movie were all very cool too. The only complaint I had was in most of the car scenes, the actors aren't in a real car, and you can tell it's fake, but it's overall okay. I thought it was great and I recommend it. Go see it.
Philip K. Dick has been the resource of stories for some very exciting
films (Minority Report, Total Recall, Blade Runner), but in NEXT, his
short story 'The Golden Man' as adapted by Gary Goldman and directed by
Lee Tamahori, the concept of precognition as a human feature in
altering the future falls into a video game format that becomes more
action film and less human interest tale.
Cris Johnson AKA Frank Cadillac (Nicholas Cage) is a sloe eyed Las Vegas grungy magician who has found a way to hide the fact that he has the gift to see two minutes into his future, a gift that rewards him at the gambling tables but draws attention from the FBI after a thwarted attempt on Cris' part to stop a robbery is captured on video tape. The FBI, especially Agent Callie Ferris (Julianne Moore), knows that a nuclear device has entered the USA by terrorists headed by 'Mr. Smith' (Thomas Kretschmann), and that if the device cannot be traced, a nuclear bomb threatens the lives of millions of citizens. Agent Callie observes Cris' talent and engages him to aid in the discovery of the site of the device. But Chris' powers lead him to a beautiful young woman Liz (Jessica Biel) with whom his powers to see into the future can be extended for more than the requisite 2 minutes. After a series of 'attempts' at introduction, Cris and Liz bond, allowing Cris' expanded powers to be of more help to the persistent Agent Callie. From that point on the film dissolves into yet another combustible crashing action flick with endless CG special effects, all but erasing the character development. And the ending is as one might expect - not very Philip K. Dick in style.
Cage and Biel do well, Moore seems bored with her character, and Kretschman yet again embodies the evil of terrorism and beyond. There are some rather extraneous scenes on an Indian reservation that add little except the beauty of the Grand Canyon to the story, and there are some truly funny scenes of themes and variations on the chances we take in approaching a potential love source. But in the end all gets rather lost in the explosions ad infinitum that mark the film as a routine action flick. Grady Harp
It was really interesting to watch this movie because it took the
"ability to see the future" idea in a slightly new direction. The lead
character can see the future, but only what happens to him and only 2
minutes into the future. Furthermore, he lives his life laying low so
as to not get any attention.
Now that is a cool idea for a movie ... and it takes off from there when he finally does get noticed. Nicolas Cage does a great job of playing the lead role of a guy who just wants to be left alone. Julianne Moore is very effective as the bright and ruthless government agent pursuing Cage for the "greater good."
The movie is engaging (you always want to find out what happens next) and you get to see an interesting idea played out: how can he use his amazing yet limited ability given critical challenges?
If you're a sci-fan and like the idea behind this movie, definitely catch this. For everyone else, I'd say it's a definite thumb's up.
While I enjoyed the premise of this film, I felt like I so often do.
You've got this neat idea; what are you going to do with it? Nicolas
Cage plays a man who can see two minutes into the future, which allows
him to move to different places to avoid danger, protect people in
danger, and so on. The problem comes with the immutability of time. If
you change things, what you saw really wasn't true; hence the plot
hole. It was fun watching him dodge bullets and punches. What is hard
to swallow is the mind that can put order to all this. Is this going on
constantly or can he truly control it. If the mystery is out of his
life, can he know the mystery. Part of my problem is that I never
really understood what the bad guys were up to (I don't mean on a
grander scale but on the details). Cage's relationship with Biel is
nice but can he even have a relationship. The two minute thing was
convenient. What if it had been a half hour or a day. How would that
affect things. Anyway, when the ending comes, it seems satisfying but
Someone said that people booed at the end. I'm sure it's because for some people, leaving a little too much to imagination is quite a stretch. It was a fun couple hours, but one shouldn't think too much. As for Philip K. Dick, he can provoke us pretty well.
When a group of terrorists threatens to explode a nuclear weapon in Los
Angeles, FBI agent Callie Ferris (Julianne Moore) sees in the Las Vegas
magician and smalltime crook Cris Johnson a.k.a. Frank Cadillac
(Nicolas Cage) the hope to find where the device is hidden. Cris has
the ability to foresee and change his future up to two minutes ahead,
but is not receptive to the government proposal afraid of the
experiments he was submitted when he was a child. While escaping from
FBI, Cris meets the gorgeous Liz Cooper (Jessica Biel) in a cafeteria
and he recalls that he had dreamed on her. Liz offers a lift to Cris
and they immediately fall in love for each other. But agent Ferris
wants to force Cris to help her at any cost while Liz is abducted by
"Next" is one of the best action movies I have recently seen, with an excellent and unpredictable story of the awesome Philip K. Dick; gripping screenplay with many twists that inclusive provides a hook for a possible sequel; and fine performances of three of my favorite contemporary actors and actresses: the sensational Nicolas Cage, the wonderful Julianne Moore and the sweet Jessica Biel. I really liked a lot the hilarious sequence when Cris is "studying" the best way to approach to Liz in the restaurant. My vote is eight.
Title (Brazil): "O Vidente" ("The Fortuneteller")
I saw this movie on sale for a bargain £3.
I had never heard of it, but Nicholas Cage is usually watchable, Lee Tamahori did the brilliant Once Were Warriors and the 'look 2 minutes into the future' Macguffin sounded intriguing enough; so I bought it and put it in the DVD player after dinner for myself and the wife to watch.
It was really good and kept us both on the edge of our seats until the end (the ending was also very clever IMHO).
Actually the best movie (along maybe with Watchmen) that I've seen this year.
I imagine the pitch was something like 'Groundhog Day meets Die Hard', but for once they more or less pulled it off.
They could have had a love interest with less of an age gap (but I assume Jessica Biel is there for eye candy not acting reasons) and the plot is a bit silly at times, but Cage plays it with just the right amount of 'tongue in cheek' as a lead in a paranormal action romance and compared with the last movie I sat and watched with my wife (the third Mummy) which is in a similar genre I suppose, this is in a different class.
I can't really understand why so many folks give this really low ratings. Maybe it's real hard core action guys who dislike it, and it's probably not for them - but really this came as a very pleasant surprise. Highly recommended.
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