Sunday, September 28, 2008

REVIEW: Eagle Eye

Eagle Eye

Year: 2008
Director: D.J. Caruso
Starring: Shia LaBeouf, Michelle Monaghan, Rosario Dawson, Billy Bob Thornton, Michael Chiklis
Distributor: DreamWorks SKG
MPAA: Rated PG-13

I have been anticipating Eagle Eye ever since I saw its awesome trailers. The trailers made the film look so cool and somewhat unique that I simply just had to see it. My anticipation slowly started to die down as soon as the reviews for this film started coming out. The film has been criticized left and right by critics around the world. They were stating its plot was too complex and how it simply goes no where. Still, I wanted to see the film for myself and see what I thought about it. I mean it was from the same director who brought us last years "Disturbia" which I thought was pretty entertaining. So I just simply had to see for myself.

Plot Outline:
Jerry Shaw (Shia LaBeouf) returns home after the mysterious death of his successful twin brother. He and a single mother, Rachel Holloman (Michelle Monaghan), find out that they have been framed as terrorists and are threatened into becoming members of an organization tasked to assassinate a politician.

The plot for Eagle Eye is mostly a let down. The film's story starts out interesting with some terrorist bombing in the middle east followed by a mysterious phone call from an unknown woman. It continues to keep us interested by only giving us bits and pieces of the final story while throwing some entertaining action scenes. When we finally get to the conclusion of this story, we find ourselves very disappointed. The final act of the film is way un-satisfying and un-interesting. The films ending is stupid and not something I personally liked. The film is also very cheesy and way over the top. Some if not most of the action scenes although cool are hardly believable. The film also manages to rip off several high profile films such as I Robot, Enemy of the State and many more. Its as if you mixed all those films together and tried to make it fit into a 2 hour film, you would get Eagle Eye. I will admit that the characters we have are pretty interesting to watch and that the films first half is simply pure fun, but with out a satisfying ending to all of this, it just doesn't work. The films got too many problems that it just overshadows anything good in this film. Eagle Eye should have stuck to a more simpler route and should have concluded in a way that doesn't leave the audience wondering what happened.

Shia LaBeouf plays as Jerry Shaw and he does a wonderful job here. LaBeouf has come a long way from being that guy from Even Stevens to one of Hollywood's most bankable stars. His last 3 films have all done great at the box office and Eagle Eye looks to become another hit. Hes also a pretty good actor and looks to be trying most of the time. Michelle Monaghan plays as Rachel Holloman and she too is great in her role. I think she did a good job and was very believable in her role. Rosario Dawson plays as Zoe Perez and shes pretty much average here. Theirs simply nothing special about her character and she hardly shines in this film. Billy Bob Thornton plays as Agent Thomas Morgan and he does his usual thing. I found his character to be funny at times even when hes being serious. I'm not sure if Thornton was an ideal choice for this role. We also have Michael Chiklis playing as Defense Secretary Callister. While Chiklis does a pretty good job in his role, his characters seems somewhat useless in a way.

The visual look of Eagle Eye is pretty much on the same boat as that of Disturbia. Both films are shot mostly in dark lit areas and both have high contrast. Unlike Disturbia, Eagle Eye features many CGI special effects mostly in the action scenes. These all look great for CGI effects and really have that certain roughness to it. For being a brand new release, Eagle Eye surprisingly contains some film grain. These don't get in the way of things, but it also doesn't make the image look smooth as most new releases are. Colors are mostly dark and pretty hot. The film has this somewhat gritty look to it that makes the colors seem flat and grey. Flesh tones are pretty accurate, but don't hold up well in some of the darker scenes. Detail is great for the most part with only some few scenes that look a bit soft.

Like Disturbia, the soundtrack in Eagle Eye is shockingly great. The films music is composed by Brian Tyler who also did the most recent Rambo flick. He does a good job here and Eagle Eye is always filled with some music. The score goes pretty well for a thriller film like this and had me in suspense. I think he did a good job here and I'm eager to see what hes got coming next. Eagle Eye features a bombastic bass mix. I would have been really really surprised if a film like this didn't have a killer bass mix just because the trailer revealed a ton of action scenes. Luckily, the film does have a killer bass mix and one that goes so great with everything. Car crashes sound and feel just right. Dynamics are loud and spread out very evenly. This is definitely something to look out for once it hits DVD simply because of its killer bass.

Eagle Eye is a disappointing film that doesn't connect and doesn't live up to what its trailer made it out to be. Which was an awesome thriller flick with some interesting ideas. Instead, it recycles some high profile films and tries to make everything work. The films story starts off really nice and interesting, but its conclusion just doesn't cut it. The cast is great and most of them give out good performances that is easily suitable for a film like this. The visual look of the film is just like Disturbia, but features some nice CGI effects. The soundtrack is loaded with some killer bass mix that really rocked the theater. I honestly wouldn't recommend Eagle Eye. Its got some entertaining moments, but also a ton of problems. Id skip this and maybe give it a rent when it comes out on DVD.

Grade: D+


jaccstev said...

Good review Farzan, I can see your disappointment with the film. But this somewhat remembered me when I come to the theater and watch "The Mummy 3", really don't expect so much from it. probably the same with this film, after I've heard the news that it was re-scheduled to release on September instead of the previously mid of summer date. I know something was wrong with the pic. But somehow I just watched it as another entertaining film and it just work. But I also agree with you that the film was failed to deliver a good ending, it just doesn't work with the twist that they're gonna make. As you know, the story idea was came from Steven Spielberg's mind, and this man already got some issues before with the ending of "War of the World". I'll post my review this Monday where I'd gave the film somewhat 6 points out of 10.

Mitch Harper said...

I still can't get over my days watching LaBeouf on Even Stevens haha. What ever happened to Ren??? She might of been the successful on that show but she sure as hell isn't now haha.

I'm probably going to be skipping Eagle Eye now after reading your review. Thanks for the insight.

Mikey@the_Movies said...

Hi! I just wanted to let you know I'm adding your blog link to my review blog!

Farzan said...

@jaccstev: I never knew it was Spielberg's story idea. I mean I knew he produced the film, but I never knew he had a big role in the writing of it. A 6/10 is mostly the same as my review. It ends up being around a D in terms of letters.

@Mitch: Dont know what happened to Ren, but I always did enjoy her on that show. I think shes now doing voice overs for small cartoons or something judging from her IMDB credit.

@Mikey: Thanks Mikey

Monique Elisabeth said...

I was wondering if I was gonna hit this one... now I'm thinking probably not.

CruizD said...

Wow, this does sound like a pretty average film and it did look really good.
Only hits South Africa in two weeks.. or is it next week...
damn, exams start monday... though I'll try and get Bangkok Dangerous in :)

(oh, might leave this for DVD like you say... will see)

Matt Cyganik said...

It was entertaining, but man was it over-the-top. It took a lot, and I mean A LOT for me to swallow the crazy situations being thrown at me.

Glad not everybody is sucking up to Shea LaBoof though.

Farzan said...

The film for sure had alot of over the top action scenes

CruizD said...

Got around to watching this ad I mostly agree with your review.
Action scenes were fun to watch but the 2nd half just feels awkward and not up to pace with the first half.

Oh, ad the ending was horrible... pity actually. Didn't have time to put a review in (exams!) but I'd give it around a 6.

Avatar said...

I did went for this movie and I was impressed it was more than I expected. I like it totally. My rating for this movie is 8/10. I did even wrote a review for the movie in my blog. Your blog is awesome, perfect blog for movie reviews. Keep it up.