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Ignore the critics, good film
sebbytong4 May 2009
I was really surprised by how entertained I was by this. There were many negative reviews of this film and after watching the film I realised how many critics are actually quite lazy. They derided the plot as convoluted but actually I found it complex but understandable. To dismiss it as a heroes knock-off is also unfair. It's a sci-fi film but that doesn't mean all sci-fi films are the same. The film makes good use of its Hong Kong location more so than any recent film I've seen and the characters were memorable. The special effects were there for the story and not the other way around. I usually read film reviews but am glad, in this instance, I ignored them.
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Let yourself be Pushed.
Jens Sangsta16 June 2009
I don't see why this movie has been turned down by so many people or why such a bad word has been spread about it.

Push is one of the better modern superhuman-themed movies you will find. It won't be your top five of the year and you won't watch it a million times, but you should really like it. It won't blow you away, but it won't disappoint you.

I give my opinion on this movie not as a fully fledged movie expert, fully up-to- date, premier-going, Oscar-loving critic - but as an artistically natured, deep- rooted film lover. And I say this movie is worth watching. It has a bit of everything that is to be desired in a good movie. While a lot could've been different, and you could've improved it in many ways, it's still fine just as it is.

The story in this movie is excellent. How it is portrayed and told is great. The actors all fulfill their role, some with splendor. And no matter what anyone might have told you; this movie is greatly artistical.

I believe Push is quite unique in many ways, foremost for its unusual lack of hierarchy of the powers you see in the film. You're used to see a lot of people possessing powers, but only one of them - Magneto for instance - being the one standing above all else. But in Push no one is the obvious stronger one.

Push uses a lot of twists, and not in the first-Saw-movie way which blows you out of your seat, but it still manages to keep the movie interesting, even tough the twists are all quite predictable.

Push is also, as I said, greatly artistical. It has a lot of fantastic colors and utilizes lighting very well, it's set in very beautiful environments, and there are a lot of other great cinematic techniques being used. I especially like the choice of soundtrack in this movie. It reminds me a lot of the way they choose to use music in The Dark Knight. Instead of some really catchy, noticeable soundtrack there's been a very diligent work done with a subtle yet powerful soundtrack that emerges only when necessary and gives an indescribable force to the movie.

All in all, Push is a quite non-mainstream, entertaining, good movie worth watching.
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Don't Think Too Hard If You Want to Enjoy This Movie
evanston_dad1 October 2009
This little bit of cinematic junk food is moderately entertaining if you're not looking to exercise any brain cells. It's about a bunch of people -- some good, some bad -- with special powers in pursuit of a suitcase that contains something that everybody wants. I could go into what the suitcase actually contains, and why it's important, and why everyone wants it, but I don't have the energy, and it doesn't matter much anyway, because the film is more interested in its style than it is in its plot, which isn't in this case a criticism.

The film reminded me of a jacked up version of one of those 1940s crime thrillers, where everyone speaks in a hard-boiled patter and what happens isn't nearly as important as how it all looks happening. So what if this film's plot seems needlessly complicated, and so what if there are way too many narrative threads that don't ever get completely developed, and so what if the whole thing is edited to within an inch of its life? It's still pretty fun if you're in the mood for it.

Chris Evans and Dakota Fanning are the nominal stars, and Djimon Hounsou makes an appearance, proving yet again that what he really needs more than anything is a better dialect coach.

The crazy color palettes and art direction in this film reminded me as I was watching it of "Lucky Number Slevin," another bit of entertaining B pulp. How funny then that I look at this film's director's (Paul McGuigan) resume only to find that it includes....you guessed it....."Lucky Number Slevin." If nothing else, his films certainly have a visual style in common.

Grade: B
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Best of the recent movies in this new sci-fi sub-genre
blindcurve7 February 2009
"Push" is the best movie from a recent new genre of science fiction movies. This new genre of movies, which includes "Jumper" and "Wanted", generally involves characters with psychic or psionic abilities, a conspiratorial shadow group, and an unlikely anti-hero, set against a banal or dystopian realism. "Push" blows these other two admittedly weak offerings out of the cinematic water.

Both the visuals and the action in "Push" are quite good. "Push" is set in Hong-Kong. The city has enough exotic flavor to be interesting and enough grit to provide a realistic backdrop for the more fanciful elements of the film. The filmmakers captured the feeling of a William Gibson novel without having to set the film at night in the rain for the entire movie.

The action sequences are excellent. "Push" does not suffer from the hyper-kinetic, shake-the-camera-until-the-viewer-is-confused action sequences of "Bourne Ultimatum" or "Quantum of Solace". In "Push", you know who is punching whom and you can tell who is winning.

Visual effects? Here is what sold me on this film and on this filmmaker's vision: When a "mover" (a person with telekinetic powers) uses his ability to push something away or to enhance the power of a punch (yes, I said TK-enhanced fight sequences...don't drool on your keyboard) the visual effects people were smart enough to consider the effect on the nearby air. The air gets...crimped, and as a result the light refracts in a split second rainbow pattern at the moment of impact. That level of forethought and detail is what "Jumper" and "Wanted" lacked.

Another element that this movie possesses that "Jumper" and "Wanted" doesn't is a focus on the characters. Any movie or show about psychic powers or "superpowers" lives or dies on the relationships between the characters. The male lead and Dakota Fanning are excellent together and quickly establish a rapport that gives the film more depth. Honorable mention goes to the enemy "watcher"--she is genuinely threatening, lollipop notwithstanding. I also loved the tip of the hat to the anime genre exhibited in Cassie's (Fanning) wardrobe.

This movie is worth every bit of the matinée price I paid. And I will probably watch it again.

A few points: One, this is not a superhero movie. While people who like "Heroes" and some of the Marvel films might enjoy this movie, one should not go in expecting that kind of experience.

Two, I do wish that the producers had about 15 million extra dollars. The extra money would have allowed them to show more of the story and neatly tie a couple of loose ends, rather than telling the audience. I sincerely hope this film does well enough to garner a more expansively budgeted sequel.

Three, this movie has some minor plot issues, especially a small deux ex machina cum Toyota, that might bother some. But, if you choose to buy into the experience, "Push" will take you on a fantastic ride.

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Needs tidying up, but it's still good.
obsidianskye16 March 2009
PUSH is one of those movies which really got me excited after the first viewing of the trailer, and now that I've finally watched it, I'm glad that I did.

The storyline was rather good and believable, didn't leave me confused or bored at the end. Although more time could have been spent explaining certain things in detail instead of the constant scenes of standing around and pondering the next move.

The visual effects in this film are pretty good. And the acting isn't too bad either. Applause for Dakota Fanning and Chris Evans. Also, I really enjoyed the way the movie was shot, there was somehow this sense of realism to the whole thing.

However, I didn't enjoy Camilla Belle's acting. Although I did enjoy her performance in The Quiet, she just seemed really off in this movie. Either she wasn't given enough screen time, or she was outshone by Dakota.

By the way, those who are comparing this show to HEROES are preposterous. Telekineseis and all of these special abilities have been around long before then! Though I am a huge fan of HEROES, I think it's really nothing in comparison to PUSH.

By the way, this show had me glued to the sit even when I really had to use the toilet. In other words, I hope there's a sequel.
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Interesting premise...
Siamois23 July 2009
Push offers a very interesting premise with its wide variety of psychics and the agency trying to keep it all under control and use them. Hong Kong offers an exotic background for the action to take place.

The movie makes an interesting attempt at being half action thriller, reminiscent of a Bourne movie, and half super-hero blockbuster, in the tradition of the X-Men. But director Paul McGuigan is never able to make us fully feel for the characters and their ordeal and the action sequences, while pleasant to watch, never instill emotional response. We're not scared for anyone, our blood does not pump during chases either.

The two stars of Push are an unlikely duo of actor which surprised me somewhat. Chris Evans has often been derided as being just another bland pretty face. Here, he is paired with young Dakota Fanning, who has been revered by many as a child prodigy actress. What's interesting to me is that, had I not seen previous films from these two, I wouldn't notice much difference in quality between the two. They both give a suitable performance. Neither Oscar-worthy nor garbage.

Unfortunately, the support cast is very weak. Camilla Belle is pretty but bland as usual. Cliff Curtis and Djimon Hounsou are both amazing actors but here they have very little to work with. I blame McGuigan and writer David Bourla for not providing them with opportunities to shine.

What makes this movie a 5 rather than a 6 is its confusing and botched conclusion. As if somehow the production ran out of time and needed to wrap things up on the spot. Perhaps hoping for a sequel? Push has an intriguing premise and more than enough basic material to be stretched into a trilogy or even a short TV series but as is the rule of thumb with those sort of things, it is doubtful things will get better should sequels be produced.

I wish the premise had been used to tell a better story, in a better way.
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Adding Hong Kong grit to the superhero film genre
steelydwill5 February 2009
While there have been superhero genre films, there is something about the way that Push takes you through the back alleys, fish markets and pint-sized hotel rooms of Hong Kong that sets it apart and makes it palpably exciting. It is exotic, but this is no fantasy world, it is a dirty reality that the characters inhabit.

Fitting perfectly with this is the lack of a clear hierarchy of super powers. In most superhero films, there are clear levels of powers, and you know exactly which characters should be stronger than others, but Push has a perfectly muddied picture – we're on the edge of our seats, because we don't know who should win. It feels oddly realistic.

Chris Evans rises to the occasion as usual as the semi-powerful protagonist, Nick, mixing in his trademark cocky funny attitude with a subtle melancholy outlook. Dakota Fanning is definitely growing up, and she is highly likable as the adolescent future teller. Camilla Belle is gorgeous, and Djimon Hounsou is as intimidating as ever as the primary villain.

It's weird to see people compare this to Jumper, because while Jumper was filled with cheap tricks, Push has you talking about the movie when you leave theaters, and thinking about its concept long after. I really like the universe it created, so I really hope we'll get to see it again with a sequel!
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A great piece of something different... I already bought it!
entwinedarts8 July 2009
The trailer for "Push" did not give me a desire to see it in the theater... It was actually a last minute choice to go see it in hopes to see a good action movie. I was certainly surprised -- I have heard some bad reviews of this film, but I must say the choice to go see it was WORTH my time. The story was excellent and pieced together very well. The way it was written was something I rarely see in movies anymore. Most directors rely on special effects and explosions anymore, but "Push" used it's action/CG as a companion to the plot. The plot's structure was on the line of "The Jacket" or "Burn After Reading" where details, no matter how subtle, seem to twist and mesh into a well-thought-out idea. The little visions of the future and appearance of random characters are not meant to be simply passed off. You are allowed to think in this one... What a nice change! Switches between the gritty and crisp, colorful filming worked well in bringing a certain mood to the appropriate scenes (which also looks brilliant on BluRay). The actions scenes were great as well... With the company of the Pushers' powers and the manipulation of people and objects around them, those scenes did not usually go in the direction I anticipated.

This is not fair to call "Push" a "super hero" movie. It is not really a super hero movie, nor is it a traditional action movie; I believe this was the intention. The bolder science fiction basis kept the plot focused and within the realm of "its own" feel and stayed away from the "everything everyone else is doing" feel. Actions scenes were powerful yet short; I was left wanting more, so when the next series of craziness began I was more involved and appreciated it more.

Sure there were some editing flaws, but even major blockbusters going back to "Jurassic Park" have issues. Even still, I have found that some of these reported "flaws" in "Push" are incorrect after viewing it for a second time on BluRay.

As a final note, the entire cast held their roles wonderfully and left a lasting impression of each of their characters. I guarantee that if the original cast chose to return, I would be in line for a "Push" sequel on opening night.
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I took a nice surprise with Push
Argemaluco15 May 2009
When I saw the trailer of Push,I thought it was going to be one of those cheap movies made at low cost in order to getting a release during the low seasons of the cinematographic industry from the year.The fact that this movie went completely unnoticed when it was shown in cinemas from the United States confirmed my very low expectations with this movie.However,I won some enthusiasm for this movie when I knew its director was Paul McGuigan,whose previous movie, Lucky Number Slevin,was an entertaining rehash of the formula which was popularized by Lock,Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and its many imitators.When I finally saw Push,I took a very nice surprise with it.It's not a great film,but I found it to be a solid and very entertaining thriller with an ingenious screenplay and interesting characters.The story from this movie is developed on Hong Kong and it was an excellent decision to do that,because the exotic taste from that city makes the movie richer,not to mention the obvious possibilities of comparisons with the popular TV series Heroes go down.McGuigan's direction is perfect.He puts to this movie a good level of energy and dynamism,but he recognizes the moments in which the narrative requires a more subtle and controlled work.The direction is,by my point of view,the best element from this movie.I also appreciated the sober use of the special effects,because they only appear as authentic auxiliaries to the story.The cast is very competent.Chris Evans shows energy and conviction on his role; Dakota Fanning confirms she has left behind her past as a mini-adult,for becoming into an excellent juvenile actress; the great Djimon Hounsou brings a lot of style and energy to his character; and Ming Na is also pretty good on her role.The important fails from this movie appear on the ending.On that moment,the movie shows absurd exaggeration for finally concluding on an ambiguous and not too satisfactory note.But,in spite of that,I had a very good time watching this movie.I took a very nice surprise with Push and I recommend it because,although it is not a great movie at all,I found it very entertaining.
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pretty entertaining film
iraklis7 May 2009
Warning: Spoilers
i don't know what people are after when going to see a movie of the kind really, and then yawn about how poor it is or how wasted their time was. this kind of movie demands one certain approach. watch it for what it is and only for that, because if you are about to start comparing it and trying to find clichés, rip-offs, etc, you lose what is most important: to enjoy the film, which has nothing to say actually, but it is fun to watch anyway.

as for the film itself, i must say that i found it pretty entertaining, far from a classic, but quite good. i found the direction was great, Paul mcguigan did a great job, with odd angles and using different types of films during the takes, giving a different point of view in each scene. it gave to me a guyritchie-esquire feeling (in a good way) to be honest.

the acting was decent too. i found Evans, though i haven't watched any of his previous films, really cool. and by cool i mean the whole sense of the word. without doing much, he got me liking him from the start. Camilla belle acted just as she should: a little out of place, a little out of time. that was exactly what she had to be like in my opinion. Dakota fanning. that's an interesting one. can't exactly describe what i think of her acting, she is in a strange acting age, too old to be little, too little to be older. reminded me of Natalie portman in Leon, struggling to look older and more mature than she actually is. but the role was all about this struggle, so she coped with it very well. the villains was a minus, cause they were not so "villains" after all, especially in the beginning were the two brothers were screaming like primadonas, and i was like "what the hell? Evans can move stuff, Dakota can see the future, belle can f*** your mind and the bad guys, what? they're replicas of rob halford? what were the Nazis thinking?? 'we'll come to your house and break all your crystal, so surrender' ". anyway, the Chinese guys weren't so fearful after all, but they were the minor villains and i wonder why they didn't die earlier on the film. at least they did one thing right, they annoyed me, so i was happy they died at the end. hounsou and his blond assistant were good (bad) enough though! so i call it (almost) even.

anyway, i started writing a little comment on the movie and i ended up mumbling. so, to put an end on this all i'm saying is that push is a fun to watch film, with fair enough performances, great direction, nice plot and a nice, although suspected, twist n the end. it won't become your all time favorite, but it will sure entertain you.
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"All substance, No sense"
Simon_Says_Movies3 March 2009
Warning: Spoilers
The old saying goes, "all style, no substance" but the same cannot be said for Push. If anything, this superheroesque sci-fi actionier is more like "all substance, no sense". I have found one of the carnal sins of movie making is trying to smarten up a movie that doesn't need to be bumped up a peg. In place of break-neck action, director Paul McGuigan (who helmed the 2006 cult hit Lucky Number Slevin) has opted to cram more information and back-story down our gullets then an unlucky turkey on thanksgiving, yet without ever really accomplishing anything but convolution.

To be fair, there is still a good lot to recommend about this film. Nobody could accuse Push of being unoriginal and to McGuigan's credit the characters are more fully realized then those in most films of a similar ilk (McGuigan himself said he was more concerned with the character element then the action). Yet from the confusing opening to the splurge of character introduction in the opening act, many will find themselves drifting off and losing interest. Thankfully, by the final act the mood has settled, the heroes and villains drift in and out enough to become familiar and the supernatural element becomes significantly less convoluted. (Although some post-film research helped further yet) Cementing the movie in the realm of watchability is a spectacular final battle, shot almost entirely with stunt-work and the gritty effect is quite enticing.

The world is not as it may seem. Psychics are very real and they are both a blessing and a curse to a shadowy and sinister organization known only The Division (oooh, scary). Heavily monitored, some of those with special gifts work for The Division, others are on the run, some in hiding, but some become part of secret experiments to harness their unique gifts as weapons. Among these unique individuals are varying varieties of skills; there are Bleeders who can emit high frequency screeches that cause death, Movers who can move objects with their mind, Pushers who can insert thoughts and memories into others and the list goes on to include Shadow's, Shifter's, Sniffer's, Stitcher's, Watcher's and Wiper's. (You can see where confusion could set in) The story begins with a young Mover named Nick Grant (Chris Evans) who is attempting to avoid the Division and its shady leader Carver (Djimon Hounsou) who wants to keep tabs on him. He crosses paths with a young but gifted Watcher named Cassie (Dakota Fanning) who unfortunately has the nasty propensity to predict their deaths. Leading them to a high value subject of The Division's (Kira, coincidently an old flame of Nick's) Cassie, Nick and Kira try to prevent the powerful agency from getting hold of dangerous and powerful drug. I won't go any further into the plot then that, because otherwise I'm fairly certain you would never read my reviews again.

Of the countless films in recent years, Push reminds me the most of Jumper in more ways then one. They both feature a small population of gifted individuals being hunted by a powerful and secretive organization, and with both securing the skills of a ruthless African American agent. (In Jumper's case it was Samuel L. Jackson) More similar yet is the clear indication that the films are intended to be the first in a series of many (I will say that Push does an infinitely better job of wrapping up its chapter then the shamelessly gaping ending of Jumper) and with both I feel that any subsequent instalments will be a large improvement over the set-up and confusion of the original. So when push comes to shove, here is hoping that studios feel this inventive but uneven chase adventure was enough of a success for a sequel.

6.5 / 10.0

Read all my reviews at: http://www.simonsaysmovies.blogspot.com
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Weak plot, OK action, confusing...a good rental don't see in theater
goods1169 February 2009
Warning: Spoilers
***PROBABLE SPOILERS*** First, to be clear, I love action movies, I crave the latest superhero movie, I like Lost, Heroes, etc., what I am saying is that I can enjoy mindless action or sci-fi for what it is.

That being said, Push was a weak film on most levels. The Honk Kong setting was the only positive, but not enough to carry the film. The problems were multiple, and the movie ended up being incoherent. Some of the problems: (1) The origin of these people with powers makes no sense; (2) The intro scene with the hero as a boy tells us little; (3) How did all these people, and a 13 year old girl end up in Hong Kong?; (4) One minute he can't move dice and one day later he is all powerful?; (5) In general, how the powers work seem inconsistent; (6)The characters come in and out with little explanation to their connection to the story and why they are there or how they got there -- this is probably the biggest weakness; (7) the main plot line is muddled ; (8) many loose ends -- what happened to the mother?

Some of the fight scenes are OK, and as I said, Hong Kong, but the movie was nothing more than a sequence of scenes with characters that just show up randomly and confront or attack each other or hideout. This is probably OK to watch on HBO or on a plane, but don't spend 2 hrs in a theater.
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Great Concept, Shabby Execution
stephs_sanctuary9 May 2009
Just saw Push recently. The beginning of Push immediately grabbed my attention. I thought, "Wow! How could I dismiss this film all this time. It's really great." But as the movie progressed, it grew bland and dragging. I wasn't even paying attention to it at one point.

The cinematography was great and the way the concept has so much potential. The way these people with powers were divided immediately got me hooked. But the problem is, this was not utilized in the film too much.

There are also too much pointless exchange of words and not enough action to get the plot going, and after a while it gets irritating. I can't help but think that this could be a wonderful film if it was just executed well.
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Yes, it was awful!
webmaster-33921 July 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I did not know anything about this movie before I saw it. I saw the poster and realized it had to be about supernatural abilities. And I love a good superhero movie. I even saw Superhero Movie with a smile although I wouldn't praise that one in any way.

But this one. Damn, it's awful. Believe me.

Sure it has some good action scenes. I did enjoy the battle between Nick and the agent with the same telekinetic powers. That was an original way to make use of this particular power. At least I can't remember having seen something like that before.

But the story is a mess. And nothing will save a bad story. Not when it is this bad. Here are my problems (spoilers ahead).

The watchers. They predict the future. But how. Not even the writer knows. At one point Dakota explains that they read your intentions. Your thoughts as you are about to act. Hence they make a brilliant plan where Nick will write what everybody else has to do on some cards. This way nobody will know what to do until the moment they do it. Afterwards Nick will get his memory wiped and the future will be a mystery.

Sounds good? Well, here are some flaws.

a) Nick knows what everybody will do for 2 hours before his mind is wiped. That's a lot of time to read his mind considering that the watchers must have been able to do so within seconds based on what they have predicted previously in the movie.

b) There are lot's of other predictions that appear to have nothing to do with people's intentions or thoughts. At one point Dakota is wandering the streets trying not to think about where she's heading. At a crossroad she closes her eyes and spins around, but an evil watcher is able to detect what path she took even though she doesn't know herself. And she ends up exactly where she herself had predicted that she would die. There is no way that these predictions could have been based merely on intentions.

c) But somehow Nick knew exactly where she would be and was able to instruct the wiper to be there also in time to rescue her. But how? Nick isn't a watcher. And even if he was, none of these events was based on intentions.

This means that the ability to watch i.e. predict the future is inconsistent. The story tells you a fact, but doesn't stick to that fact. And I consider that to be sloppy writing.

It even stretches this fact to the point where Nick gets his memory wiped and at the exact same moment the evil watcher senses that the future has somehow disappeared. Whatever she was sensing up to that point without actually reading all the information in his mind, who knows? Maybe she had forgotten to tune in and was listening to some white noise.

d) Nick is also somehow able to predict that the agent boss will use his pushing powers to make Camilla believe that she and Nick have never been dating and never been to Long Island. That she is an agent also and has participated willingly. Hence he tells her in advance to read her instructions when she begins to doubt the truth and her instruction card is a picture of them both at Long Island with the message to "shoot him". Fortunately "him" at the time happened to be the agent boss.

I could go on. I honestly felt that a lot of the twists and turns of the story was made up to get out of a corner without considering if that particular twist or turn in any way could go against the continuity or the logic of the story as a whole.

And that might be alright if this was a Steven Seagal movie. Or something similar. But this one made the mistake of making the viewer expect something more.
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Worth Watching (if Only For the Scenery Alone!)
srvblooze19 November 2011
All of the reviews I've read of this movie have savaged it and, personally, I didn't think it was nearly bad as bad as all that. There were some interesting characters (the guy they enlist to help them hide themselves from the bad guys comes to mind here), and it put a new and interesting spin on the whole "people with super powers" genre. BUT...what really makes me love this film is the depictions of Hong Kong. See, I have been living in Hong Kong for almost 5 years now and I've told all my friends and family that if they want to get a good look at the many sides of the city (other than the touristy facade is typically presented), watch this movie. The film makers really did a great job of capturing what it's like to wander around Hong Kong, and the cinematography is like eye candy.
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Rips Off A Little From A Lot - But Not Too Terrible
patrickmmc18 February 2009
Usually I am very critical of films, especially today's works. However, I can't be too hard on this one. It was an enjoyable film and a reasonable escape from reality.

The biggest problem with "Push" is that it rips off everything from "Blade Runner" to "Heroes," "4400," "Star Wars" and the likes. Mostly though, this film is Stephen King's "Fire Starter" in a whole new wrapper with some new and improved effects.

The concept has undoubtedly been realized before. The plot is fair to put it best, and the characters are for the most part - likable and interesting. The effects are pretty good too. Sadly, the story is a little weak, but not terrible.

For a pass time and some popcorn, the film is favorable. But, there probably won't be any awards won here. If you are really critical about movies and how you spend your money, you may wish to wait for DVD. Otherwise, if you just need something to do and you want to waste some time in fantasy land, check it out at the theaters.
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Scarecrow-8825 July 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Humans equipped with great, unique psychic powers are victims of an organization known as the Division..a United States organization which desire to create the ultimate weapons against their opposing countries. It seems other countries have adopted their own breed of humans as we see in Hong Kong as Henry Carver(Djimon Hounsou), representing the US, and his right-hand man, Victor(Neil Jackson) are seeking a syringe containing a fluid that could perhaps create the most powerful psychic. He plans to use it on Kira(Camilla Belle), a "thinker"(..a psychic who can change the thoughts of others, forcing them to do her bidding, actually creating whole entire fictitious scenarios on the spot in their minds)who had survived an injection which has killed everyone else. The syringe, Carver believes, containing a powerful serum, could be the final stage in creating the superhuman his government has always desired. Escaping from the institution holding her, Kira is on the run. Meanwhile a "watcher", Cassie(Dakota Fanning, growing up before our eyes), the daughter of the most powerful clairvoyant of the Division, seeks the help of a "mover", Nick(Chris Evans), a young man with the ability to move objects..and people..with thought, and holds a vendetta with Carver for killing his father. Nick and Cassie will join forces, as they find other allies in Hong Kong, those who had been released by the Division and wish to see the organization end, hoping to find Kira and the case holding the serum. Cassie's determined to get the case for her mother's well being depends on it. A key aspect in the story that keeps the tension is Cassie's constant visions of their deaths. Meanwhile, our heroes will also have to contend with the Chinese government who have their own human psychics. Two of the Chinese(..called "bleeders") have the power to break glass and cause physical destruction to humans with their ferocious high-frequency screams. Cassie's main adversary is a fellow clairvoyant, working for her father of the Chinese government, who sees future actions as they happen(..the trick to stopping her to change their plans as she reads their minds, throwing her off track when necessary). We also have psychics with the power to heal, wipe out memory, manipulate others by changing the appearance of an object(..neat ability if you are playing cards), those who can mask people from being located for a short span, and those equipped with the ability to sniff objects(..their role to hunt their quarry down), reading the past activities of whatever item the person held during a small period of time.

Wirey premise and insanely convoluted. Exotic setting, slick production values, attractive cast, flashy camera-work, and some unusual Matrix-like special effects where men are ascended in mid air by telekinetic powers, thrown through windows and against walls. Dakota Fanning finally gets to swear(sh#t), but essentially remains a smart, quick-talking lass who stirs the action with her key role as the clairvoyant who trades quips with the adults(..hell, she's pretty much always been in this role, except we now realize that she's growing up)like a straight-shooter. I think it's imperative that you enter this film without paying too close attention to the plot because it's so screwy that you may soon find the whole ordeal tiresome. Lots of visual eye candy on display, which captured(..and kept) my attention, when the plot had me going around in circles, and plenty of unpredictable(..and contrived)twists and surprises. You barely catch a breath as our heroes move from one place to next, attempting to stay one step ahead of their pursuers. And, I was entertained by how many times the filmmakers save Evans' ass when it was almost assured he'd be a goner. A guilty pleasure movie, I will say, but not a flick that will remain with you. Popcorn fodder..was badly marketed and a terrible title didn't help. The violence in the film is strictly PG-13, and it seems the director uses old tricks rather than CGI, which I admire quite a bit. Good chemistry between Evans and Fanning, I think, help keep the less action-oriented scenes afloat. The nifty idea of Fanning's Cassie artistically rendering the future on a pad(..we always see her scribbling away when she isn't ordering Evans around)is an interesting addition to the crazy story-line shenanigans. How the gang are able to contend with their enemies at the very end will probably have you scratching your head in disbelief(..only a brilliant screenwriter could whip up such an incredibly deranged series of events using written commands on paper, hidden in concealed envelopes to be opened at an appropriate time).
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Push Movie Review from The Massie Twins
GoneWithTheTwins5 February 2009
Push showcases a remarkable amount of creativity and potential, yet oddly shifts between a state of incompletion and overdevelopment. The film ends too soon but takes too long in getting to its truncated conclusion, and a surplus in character quantity allows few to be explored adequately. Movers, Pushers, Shifters, Sniffers, Bleeders, Watchers, and more inhabit this unique realm of psychically enhanced beings, and while each has a specific super power, most feel like they were invented just to counter the abilities of another type of psychic warrior.

The Division, a group of government agents charged with experimenting on those gifted with psychic powers, has devised a serum that will drastically enhance the user's performance. The only drawback is that none have survived the dosage – until now. Kira (Camilla Belle) is a "pusher" (able to force a fabricated reality into another's mind) who has withstood the normally fatal injection, and upon escaping her captors, manages to stay one step ahead of them by utilizing her tremendous psychic gift. Cassie (Dakota Fanning) is a "watcher" (able to see into an ever-changing future) who seeks out downtrodden Nick (Chris Evans) a "mover" who has squandered his talent for moving objects with his mind. Together the duo must rescue Kira from The Division's main puppet Carver (Djimon Hounsou) and locate a mysterious case that contains the last hope of bringing down the tyrannical agency.

The overlong third act in Push is largely dependent on circumstances that have no factual support. Nick realizes that every move they make is being predicted by other watchers; the only way to avoid intentions that can be tracked is to be completely spontaneous. This involves plotting out a scheme and then having his memory wiped just far back enough that he won't remember coming up with the plan. Since when was Nick so brilliant that he could devise such a solution – let alone one that a group of talented psychic warriors would blindly follow? It's as if he's Neo in the Matrix, and the supporting characters are to assume he's "The One."

Whether we choose to ignore the plausibility of the denouement, there's also the matter of an overabundance of super-powered mutants, each one with unique abilities. It's not that it's difficult to keep track of who is capable of what, but rather few of the talents are given much definition or screen time. In fact, the most exciting cabalistic showdown doesn't even initially involve Nick, but rather with cool Division henchman Victor, who gets to combat machinegun bullets with his bare hands. In the end, Push had plenty of potential and the setup for sequels, but the "wow" factor is tragically neutral. Action, special effects and flashy editing can't make us care for characters and events that seem trivial, despite crafting a world that is both fascinating and not too outlandish that it can't be explained during the opening title sequence voice-over.

By its very intricate nature, the events and circumstances in Push work to make its audience think about what they've just seen – which unfortunately brings undue attention to the numerous plot holes and nonsensical predicament resolutions our heroes face. In the end it's more fun than not, but the film finds itself feeling more like the first part of a story rather than a standalone adventure burdened by the responsibility of introduction to an elaborate new world.

  • The Massie Twins
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Very weak
not_even_one5 May 2009
Here is yet another film which tries to rehash and cash in on the superhuman/superhero/conspiracy/enslavement/MK Ultra paranoia. The premise itself is not necessarily a bad thing, but the execution fails on almost every level that defines a movie.

The writing is beyond bad -- it is confusing, and not in a good way, it's incoherent, and it laughably tries to be smart. The plot is basically one big chase scene, with the good guys trying to outsmart the bad guys. The character development is null. No character has a plausible motivation, and at times you'll find yourself thinking "wait, what? Who are those guys? Why did they...oh, whatever."

The direction takes the cake though. You'll feel like you're watching an almost 2 hour long TV commercial. You expect cool fighting scenes? Don't. There's exactly two of them in the whole film, and the director decided to abuse the shaky cam technique. Abuse it so bad you will feel motion sickness. There's a lot of filler material in there. I honestly wonder how they managed to make it almost 2 hours long. If you cut out all the completely unnecessary car-commercial types of montages, you'll probably narrow this down to 75 minutes or so.

Last but not least, the cast. This is the only vaguely redeeming part of this mess. Chris Evans does a good job, and Dakota Fanning isn't too annoying, I guess.

All in all, this is a waste of time. An unnecessarily long one.
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can't believe the average rating is 6+ (may have spoilers)
sakatsu26 June 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I watched the movie resulting from the above average user rating found here. I wasn't impressed by the trailer but IMDb's rating convinced me that it wouldn't be that bad. Boy, I was wrong. (Regardless of this comment, IMDb is still tops!) For this main reason, i was compelled to write a comment on this movie to warn others and drive down the over inflated rating. The whole movie is one big mess... from the ill defined characters, wooden acting, poor screenplay/script, terrible direction leading to poor editing... the list goes on. I watched this on DVD and had to fast forward most of it, not being able to endure the draggy pointless scenes but yet needed to know the ending. I particularly got annoyed with the screamers. Quite honestly, the protagonists could have just bought grade-A ear plugs. What a waste of talented Asian + western actors/actresses! I enjoy most of Dakota Fanning and Djimon Hounsou movies but this movie has simply degraded their talented work done previously. They are not alone in this as surrounding them were equally well known Asian actors (in Asia). I list this as one of their worst projects. I have seen the director's other work which were OK. However, with this release, I will probably be very cautious on watching his next one.
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Lost in a sea of kinetic energy
badidosh11 February 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Paul McGuigan's sci-fi narrative "Push" may visually resemble a superhero movie for the artsy-fartsy crowd mostly because of Peter Sova's extravagant cinematography of the film's Hong Kong location that recalls a Wong Kar-Wai film, but beyond the ocular smorgasbord of the flashy colors of the cityscape and the lavish use of wide-angle lenses, what's left is a hyperkinetic hodgepodge of genre clichés with a plot more convoluted than a full season of the nevertheless superior TV series "Heroes".

Telekinetic Nick (Chris Evans) is living in Hong Kong (which inexplicably has become the melting pot of supra-talented individuals) and is currently on the lam from the Division - an American government agency tracking down people with extraordinary abilities they inherited from their parents who, in turn, were the subjects of a treacherous experiment that aimed to use superpowered humans as weapons - that also killed his father many years ago. Here he meets the clairvoyant Cassie (an alcohol-drinking, miniskirt-wearing Dakota Fanning) who insists the only way the two of them can escape their impending deaths is if they find a certain girl named Kira (Camilla Belle) before Division villain Harvey Carver (Djimon Honsou) or a Chinese gang does.

While the film's premise of shabby rebels going up against spiffy corporate baddies sometimes feel overly familiar, the real downer is how David Bourla's initially promising script eventually trips into arbitrarily drawn expositions and incoherent babbling from trying so hard to complicate matters, perhaps as an extenuation for its conventions. McGuigan's flashy direction and the visually striking locale keep the whole thing sporadically interesting, although the ultimately disorienting effect makes one wonder whether Nick's remark that nothing they do should make sense mirror the filmmakers' intention of turning this into a pile of drivel as they leisurely stroll along.
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Inept experience
Mihnea the Pitbull16 February 2009
Warning: Spoilers
I have to say I sort of perversely enjoyed the inept experience of watching "Push". It reminded me of a building constructed by blind crippled toddlers without tools, but on crack. They should be taught that we can't pile up on paper, either on screen, a mound of happenings with no head or tail - they MUST follow a certain structure, according to a set of rules, if we want to have what one calls a "movie script"... The line-of-events is chaotic, confusing, impossible to follow, deprived of any logic and coherence. We just see a host of human figures, with various psychic powers, using them on each other, in the most irrational manner...

Everything is directed in a very detached way - read: flat, dry, devoid of personality, so that we couldn't care the less about what happens. There is no possible involvement to this nutty and reckless "story". It's boring, stationary, even irritating frequently - because the movements on screen disturb our thoughts about what we plan to do after the ordeal will come to an end.

The cinematography is extremely rich - meaning: awfully strident; a chromatic mess in over-saturated tones, of the worst taste possible; "kitsch" is GRACIOUS concept, compared with this! The acting...? Hideous! It's not enough that the lines are unlikely to the point of total falseness, but the performers (calling them "actors" would be an offense to this noble guild) deliver them with an absolute lack of depth, or even realism... Instead, they make all kind of faces, goggle their split eyes (half of the cast are Chinese on drugs) and make noises: "Yah!... Boo...! Meouwgh!" As for that fanning person - one single word is... enough: "ENOUGH!"
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Going To Need Psychic Powers To Figure This Out...
dukevega7 February 2009
Warning: Spoilers
Sometimes I don't get Asian action films, which is my favorite genre of foreign films. I'm not saying this to put them down, it's just that there are differences between Eastern and Western storytelling, and it is sometimes difficult for me to leave my Western way of thinking and getting into that Eastern perspective when watching a movie from there. That being said, this movie, written by a Westerner, makes less sense than any Asian action film I have ever seen. EVER.

The main idea of this film is a kind of shadow war being waged by those with psychic powers. There are "movers" (people with telekinetic powers), "watchers" (people who can see the future), and "pushers" (people who can mentally control others). Other powers featured are psychometry, psychic healing, memory wiping, hypersonic screaming, and psychic tracking, but they are minor players.

The first half is actually pretty coherent, but then the second half becomes impossibly convoluted as the protagonists try to outwit an enemy watcher, not to mention a few monkey wrenches thrown in by pushers. And they did a damn good job. I tried to ignore the particulars and stay focused on an object that everyone seemed to be fighting for, but I couldn't even do that.

It's a real shame too, because there were some elements that worked, namely Dakota Fanning. She put on a good performance, even though she was saddled with this mess of a plot. If an actor can do that, that means they're good, IMHO.

Anyway, unless you can disengage your brain and just enjoy this movie as a pure visual thrill ride, then you are better off not seeing it.
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Pushers, Watchers, Sniffers and Screamers
JoeytheBrit2 March 2010
What a mess this film is. Pushers, watchers, sniffers and screamers, all running around Hong Kong (clearly some kind of tax break going on there) in search of a case containing a syringe full of, well, stuff, that will, erm, do something important. The plot is so muddled as to be nigh on incoherent, but I just didn't care enough to bother rewinding to figure it out. Chris Evans – who is as much of a leading man as Paul Walker – plays a pusher who may or may not be on the run from the Division when we meet him. If he is on the run, they don't seem too interested in him when they track him down. They're more interested in some chick who survived an injection of a drug they have developed in order to create an enhanced version (although you have to wonder why – the original seems potent enough) and has gone on the run. There's also a precocious little girl (well played by Dakota Fanning who is by far the best thing about the film) who sees the future which would be a bonus for her mates – if she would only stop drawing them dead.

This isn't a particularly long film, but it seems to drag on for hours. Nearly all its ideas are stolen from other – better – films and books. Even the lead villain is a Samuel L. Jackson lookalike…
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Not A Classic, But May be Enjoyable.
mstie33318 February 2009
Have you ever turned on a movie on television and wonder what it is about because you missed the intro? This is like watching the movie Push. If there is a plot it is dug in so deep that you cannot find it. What I got is this: A guy has the power to "push" and meets up with a girl that can "watch" and they go on some sort of search. This has a lot of subplots that are never truly filled in. An example would be when one main character tells the other that their powers need training, Suddenly halfway into the movie they use their powers flawlessly. It leaves you asking if you missed something but in reality you have been there the entire time.

I cannot say every part of this movie is terrible there was its moments where the actors did great, but the writing was so laughably bad it did not matter. I would never guess I would be saying that Dakota Fanning was the best actor in this entire film, But the weird thing is, I am actually saying that. Compared to the somewhat feminine Chris Evans and Camilla Belle, Dakota was actually ten times more convincing. It is too bad that the writing and other actors where so bad that she seemed to be the only one taking the film seriously. It is very unusual when the youngest out acts the entire cast but in this production it happened.

I question some of the films action scenes. A question I would ask would be this: What is the advantage of holding a gun 5 feet in front of you without using your hands? They tend to use that a lot but it is just pointless and laughable. When there is action it is always in a weird unexciting way. You just wonder why they cannot just fight instead of forcing each other up against a wall without touching them.

I want to mention the intro as being completely pointless and explains near nothing. It actually tries to tell the history of the abilities but does not succeed at their true origin. It will actually lead you into more confusion and you begin to wonder who's fault is this? The writers,The Editor, or The Director?

I was very nice to this film by giving it a five out of ten because I was originally aiming for lower. I suddenly considered the current situation through and think about it. What other action movies are you going to see? If your deciding on any other movie there probably is nothing much better. This movie is also nice because it opens up its audience to some science fiction fans. So maybe I am being a bit too harsh on this film. I will give it a five because there is possible enjoyment here. For a lot of people wondering if this will amaze them like other action movies have though, I would suggest they lower their expectations.
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