A futuristic blast

June 22, 2002, midnight | By Annie Peirce | 18 years, 6 months ago

Minority Report an exciting, but horrifying, thriller

Minority Report is an exciting and thoughtful thriller, in that order. With a billion dollar cast led by Tom Cruise, Steven Spielberg has created in his newest masterpiece a realistic, if disturbing, future of precognitive crime fighters.

John Anderton (Cruise) is a cop whose loyalty to Pre Crime borders on obsession after the unprevented death of his son and the following breakup of his marriage. With total faith in the Pre Crime system, Anderton takes images from the "precogs," a psychic female named Agatha (Samantha Morton) and a pair of male twins, who can see visions of future murders, manipulates them on a futuristic computer screen and then stops murders before they occur. However, when a murder is shown that Anderton is sure will never happen, his own murder of an unknown man, he must prove that the system he loves is flawed or face the same fate as the criminals he has put behind bars.

As Anderton runs through a futuristic Washington D.C. of 2054, Spielberg takes the audience through a dizzying world where the patterns of the present are magnified and expanded, and magnetized, preprogrammed cars chase each other on vertical high-rises. Retina scanning is used by advertisers so that billboards address passerby by their names and the Gap, whose interior decorating has not changed in five decades, can ask each customer how his last purchase turned out.

After the initial world building, the action and suspense begins and the superhuman Tom Cruise goes into action in typical summer-action-flick manner. Explosions, rocket packs, fist fights on top of dangerous machinery, lethal plants, feats of aerial insanity, and overall good times commence as Anderton/Cruise attempts to outrun government agents equipped with enough high-tech gadgetry to make even James Bond's mouth water.

Although Cruise is without question the star, the film owes a good bit of its intrigue and depth to its colorful side characters: a psychopathic plastic surgeon, Dr. Solomon Eddie (Peter Stormare), who has the job of distorting and maiming Cruise's pretty-boy features, a plant-loving Dr. Iris Hireman (Lois Smith) whose insanity is given remarkable depth during her short screen time by her knowledge and sense, the female precog, Agatha, whose powers and precognitive knowledge are the foundation of the Pre Crime system, and a caring techie, Wally (Daniel London), who cares for the precogs as his children and only friends.

As may now be apparent, Minority Report is not a happy-go-lucky, warm-and-fuzzy Spielberg movie reminiscent of E.T. or even Indiana Jones. Rather, Minority Report delves deep into the dark recesses of Spielberg's psyche, where through a thrilling world of contrasting blacks and whites, he shocks the audience into believing that the most important freedom is free will.

Minority Report, 20th century FOX, 2 hr. 20 min. is rated PG-13 and is playing in all theatres. The official site is http://www.minorityreport.com

Tags: print

Annie Peirce. Annie Peirce is a senior in the Communications Arts Program and the public relations manager for Silver Chips. She is also an opinions editor for Silver Chips Online. She was born on October 25, 1984, in a hospital somewhere in Prince George's County; but doesn't … More »

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