Harry Lockhart (Robert Downey Jr) is the unreliable narrator in this complex and hilarious mystery film. He is a thief who accidentally stumbles into an audition and is flown out to Hollywood to prepare for a role. His agent, Dabney Shaw (Larry Miller) even arranges for him to work with private eye Gay Perry (Val Kilmer) on a case to prepare – and there he gets entangled with actress Harmony Faith Lane (Michelle Monaghan who should be in everything – she’s fabulous), and a whole heap of other people – it’s very complex. In fact, despite having seen this film several times in the past, I was distracted watching this and had to go back to the start. Because what is the point of having a surprise plot twist if you have no idea what is happening.
I love it. It’s funny, it’s violent, it’s confusing, it’s an amazing cast and I think it is hugely underrated.
Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) has settled down and is in love. But then there is a mission involving rescuing his protégé Lindsey Ferris (Kerri Russell) and he is drawn back in. Working with Luther Stickell (Ving Rhames), Declan Gormley (Jonathan Rhys Meyers) and Zhen Lei (Maggie Q), he needs to get the better of arms dealer Owen Davien (Philip Seymour Hoffman) before bad things happen to his fiancée, Julia (Michelle Monaghan).
It’s a fair step up from Mission: Impossible II, although you wouldn’t know it from the first scene, where Ethan and Julia are throwing a god-awful party and it is well and truly cheesey as. But then they start running and there are explosions and mini-brain-computer-killing-machines. And Simon Pegg.
In the mid-1990s, Detectives Ruse Cole (Matthew McConaughey) and Marty Hart (Woody Harrelson) solved the case of a series of ritualistic killings in Louisiana. They are brought back for questioning over fifteen years later when similar events have been discovered. It seems that nothing was ever what it seems.
This was one of the most harrowing and difficult things I’ve sat through. It’s amazing and complex and I marvel at anyone who has been able to watch this as a TV marathon. I found two episodes in a row was the most I could managed at any one time. It was complex and every episode was a journey in itself. Certainly not for those who do not have a strong constitution.
The opening scene of Source Code is fantastic and confusing. Colter Stevens is on a train, though he doesn’t remember how he got there. As he tries to work out his confusion, he is suddenly thrust into a different reality; in some kind of crashed fighter plane or something. He discovers that the train has been bombed and he is somehow being enlisted to discover the bomber through an out-of-body psychic experience. The reality of the whole scenario is tricky to get your head around, but luckily Colter Stevens also struggles with it, so it gets explained several times without being condescending or obvious.
I loved about three-quarters of this film. The idea is magnificent, but then it became too sentimental for my liking. I couldn’t really empathise with the decisions that Stevens was making, and I felt that the film ended badly. It either needed to end twenty minutes earlier, or continue through for at least another half hour.