Set in the near future when artificial organs can be bought on credit, it revolves around a man who struggles to make the payments on a heart he has purchased. He must therefore go on the run before said ticker is repossessed.
In the future humans have extended and improved our lives through highly sophisticated and expensive mechanical organs created by a company called "The Union". The dark side of these medical breakthroughs is that if you don't pay your bill, "The Union" sends its highly skilled repo men to take back its property... with no concern for your comfort or survival. Former soldier Remy is one of the best organ repo men in the business. But when he suffers a cardiac failure on the job, he awakens to find himself fitted with the company's top-of-the-line heart-replacement... as well as a hefty debt. But a side effect of the procedure is that his heart's no longer in the job. When he can't make the payments, The Union sends its toughest enforcer, Remy's former partner Jake, to track him down.Written by
In a scene showing the city a Fast and Furious X billboard can be seen. See more »
In the scene where Remy is on the typewriter typing and Jake walks into the room, you can see words on the paper. After a camera cut, the words are gone, and a blank piece of paper is in the typewriter instead. See more »
My job is simple. Can't pay for your car, the bank takes it back. Can't pay for your house, the bank takes it back. Can't pay for your liver, well, that's where I come in.
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An advertisement screen for The Union appears at the end of the closing credits. See more »
Although it looks like a sci-fi man-on-the-run thriller, Repo Men is substandard action that takes itself far too seriously and, in fact, isn't really sure what it wants to be when it grows up. Jude Law stars as an employee of a company that sells artificial organs to lucky ducks who need them – at high interest rates – and then repossesses them when the payments aren't met.
The ads for this movie made it look almost like a satirical look at health care. Repo Men is set in the near future, when apparently everyone needs organs of some kind. Law plays Remy, the top employee at The Union (of course he is) who undergoes an epiphany when he blacks out and needs a new heart (of course he does), the payments for which (of course) he eventually can't make. Will The Union send someone – maybe his longtime partner Jake (Forest Whitaker) to repo the heart? Or will Remy, who now sees how badly immoral he's been, somehow topple the evil predatory corporation? We'll pretend, for the sake of argument, that this is science fiction. After all, you don't see companies – private companies, mind you – attacking citizens and harvesting their organs, right? But that's about the only fictitious aspect of this movie, because it's mired in clichés of movies and everyday life anyway. Sci-fi can be tough to write; it has to be smart enough to stand under the weight of its own science but be entertaining enough to sell the plot. Repo Men isn't smart or entertaining, except to bloodbath aficionados, I suppose.
What is Remy's motivation, except to survive? Are we supposed to see him as the plucky good guy going up against an evil company? Tough to do that when he slaughters scores and scores of people, even unarmed, even by hacksaw and sword. Remy doesn't seem so much as someone trying to do the right thing as someone trying to settle a personal score. Naturally, this culminates with an extended fight scene in which Remy – and his new heroine, Beth (Alice Braga) – take on not only tough goons from the corporation but also apparent office wonks, complete with neckties and pocket protectors and armed with almost nothing.
The ending is especially ludicrous, involving a hare-brained scheme to get themselves out of The Union's system (which shows them as delinquent), as if that's all it takes. Remy accomplishes this in full view of the company's honcho (Liev Schrieber) and his own (ex) partner, Jake. "See, I'm not in the system! I rule!" Well, yeah, but they saw you do it and they know you're overdue, so what the heck, Jake? It's not Chinatown.
Repo Men is riddled with plot twists that are either blindingly obvious or make little sense. Even propelling the plot isn't a task these twists are up to. To be sure, there's plenty of action, but it feels almost out of place. It's also very bloody, which you expect from a movie in which the main characters slice open living humans to grab their livers or whatever, but it's very bloody on top of that, with knives slammed into necks, limbs seemingly hacked off, and so on.
The two twists near the end are almost Shyamalanesque, in that they seem to be there merely because they're twists of some sort, not because they're plausible or, you know, not ridiculous.
Repo Men might not be the worst of the first quarter of 2010, but it has to be a front runner. A waste of a good cast, particularly Whitaker and Schrieber.
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