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What must film makers do? This was GOOD - believe nothing else.
5/10 I think some people just write reviews for sites like this because they like to complain. I actually find myself wondering if all the gripers here have actually seen Minority Report, as I just have, because I have to say that is one of the most gripping and involving movies I have seen in quite a while.5 years ago
The content is amazing - all the little details that put the audience firmly in the middle of the 21st century. Personally I can absolutely believe that technology will have advanced in the kind of ways portrayed in the film within 50 years. Just look back 50 years into the past and you should be able to see why. The lives of everyday people in the film, where they are scanned and advertised 'at' all day every day, apart from an excuse for product placement (and why not?), certainly make you think about a world where 'they' know your every move (a future towards which we are already hurtling with some speed).
The style is amazing - why the wooden balls? Because they're cool is why. I like to think that as we progress as a civilization we will keep a few such elegant idiosyncrasies knocking around. The plastic, chrome and glass sets, objects and architecture all looked clean and functional and the way that they suck the color out of a scene worked well and gave the film a distinctive palette. The cars are the best looking vehicles I have ever seen in a film. I have only one criticism here - why do all the computer displays look like Macs? Surely a touch unrealistic ;)
The story is amazing - complicated, yes, but also engrossing, exciting and scary. There are elements here that are only hinted at, but which give the plot a depth increasingly lacking in modern action flicks. And it asks the kind of questions about morality, justice, exploitation and society that'll keep you thinking for much longer that the film's two and some hours.
The direction and performances are amazing - the pre-visualization on this movie must have been a nightmare and yet all the incredible special effects blend perfectly into a visual style that is completely natural and assured, as might be expected from Spielberg and Michael Kahn. There are, of course, numerous references and homages to the work of Stanley Kubrick, which have given a hint of the edge and flair of 'Clockwork Orange' or '2001'. I hope it will continue to be a big influence on Spielberg.
Cruise delivers a first class performance as usual, but the discovery of this film is Samantha Morton as Agatha. Who saw the film and didn't share her terror and vulnerability? Little touches such as the way she clings to Cruise, almost like a baby's reflex, make her a character you immediately care about, innocent and tragic.
Anyway, if that's not enough to recommend the film, then you'll probably never find another one you like again. But if you need another reason, go to see it just for another fantastic soundtrack from the master, John Williams.
Full marks, five stars, a must see several times and buy the DVD movie.
In the world of the blind, the one-eyed man is king
9/10 This is spoken in Minority Report by a drug-dealer on the streets with no eyes at all, so I suppose its free advice for John Anderton, our hero, or a bit of wise-sounding advice meant to get across to the audience but with no other good place for it to fit in the film. This is fine with me, too, because Minority Report is such a taut futuristic thriller that an incongruous little bit of wisdom like this is not to have any negative impact on the film as a whole. John Anderton, played with precision by the great Tom Cruise (oh shut up, the man's awesome), is the chief of the Pre-Crime department in the District of Columbia, which has successfully eradicated murder entirely for the last six years. He works with a group of `pre-cogs' that, together, dream of murders that have not yet taken place and project enough information for Anderton and his team to watch the video emanating from their heads to determine where and when the murders are to take place and to get to those locations and stop the murders from happening before they happen.5 years ago
This is obviously a formula for a highly successful action movie, but the thing that really makes Minority Report succeed is that it pays so much amount of attention to things that would occur in this situation in real life. It is explained very early in the film that the invention of Pre-Crime has eradicated premeditated murder, as this is most easily detected by the pre-cogs. The majority of the `business,' then, of the Pre-Crime division in the District of Columbia, are crimes of passion. This not only provides the possibility of a lot more tension in that these crimes leave a lot less time for prevention, but also avoids complicating the plot with the details of premeditated murders. We don't care about a guy who wronged another guy five years ago or drug deals gone bad, all we need to hear about are a guy who comes home to find his wife in bed with another man and loses control.
Given the fact that the movie involves some sort of time-travel (even if information is the only thing traveling through time), it leaves itself open to criticism about plot holes. This is obvious, because plot holes like this even permeated the unparalleled Back to the Future series, which obviously had plenty of plot holes but handled them spectacularly well. Given the amount of movies that I have seen that involve time travel, I have come up with this equation: Time Travel = Plot Holes. This is a universal equation that is never escaped, but it does not mean that any movie that involves time travel will be brought down by the subsequent and unavoidable plot holes. Minority Report did not suffer from its necessary plot holes and neither did the timeless Back to the Future series (which has FINALLY been released as a complete set and which no respectable movie collection could possibly be without).
My esteemed colleague and close friend Christopher Brown (see his brilliant reviews at http://us.imdb.com/CommentsAuthor?625436) points out one of these plot holes in his review of Minority Report, but makes the mistake of suggesting that, given the nature of the precognition and of the crime itself, Anderton's murder should never have been predicted since it did not entail premeditation. Sorry, Chris, but you've missed the boat on this one. The only thing that this does is bring up the fact that it's impossible to tell where precognition starts. It could be argued perfectly well that the pre-cogs played a part in their own precognition. They predicted that Anderton would commit the murder under the circumstances that he would have been watching the thoughts of the pre-cogs and seen that he would commit murder, and then obviously sought to find out for himself how he could have been expected to commit a murder against a person he has never heard of. In this case, if he had called in sick that day, all of this would have been avoided. But he's the best at what he does, he has personal reasons for wanting to stop murder, he does not slack off, he does not call in sick. John Anderton was predicted by the pre-cogs to commit murder because he was at work that day.
The action in the film comes from the possibility that the whole prediction of Anderton's murder might be what is called a `minority report,' where the pre-cogs disagree on something that is going to happen. If he can prove that only one of the pre-cogs came up with the vision that he was going to commit a murder, it might cancel out the entire prediction because it is unreliable. On the way to this goal, we are presented with everything from a tremendously dedicated investigator (played brilliantly by Colin Farrell) to some amazingly creepy but strangely accepted identification spiders that scan John's implanted eye in one of the more uncomfortable scenes in the film.
Minority Report is one of the best and most unique thrillers to be released in years. It is the conglomeration of such a dizzying array of films that it is difficult to contemplate them all at once. We see elements of action films, futuristic thrillers, crime films, science fiction, and of course, the influence of Stanley Kubrick is never far off. There is even, especially in the later portion of the film, a heavy influence on the soundtrack by Bernard Herrman, who was the composer for most of Alfred Hitchcock's films, among many others. It's always nice to see such a respectful homage like that, and it is only one of the many things that makes Minority Report yet another addition to Steven Spielberg's extensive list of high-end films (the last of which was the spectacular A.I.). The only thing I can think of that holds Minority Report back from joining Spielberg's list of timeless classics is that it does not have the scope as far as its target audience as such films as E.T. and Jurassic Park. However, despite not having quite as large of a target audience, Minority Report stands as a strong entry in Spielberg's growing list of great films.
9/10 The future, we are told, are what we make of it. Philip K. Dick did not want to take that chance, so he wrote many many many short stories about the future of man and where we, as a society, were headed. Blade Runner, Total Recall, Paycheck, Screamers, and Minority Report are all short stories written by Dick about the future that have been turned into a movie, and most have a less than enthusiastic view of where we are headed. In Minority Report, we see the effects of predicting the future to the point of crimes are prevented by arresting murderers before they kill. If that does not appear logical, there is a quick little scene early in the movie that addresses those concerns, and on the surface makes sense. Tom Cruise plays the Washington, DC pre-crime chief, John Anderton, who runs the investigators who rely on 3 scientifically engineered beings who can see murders before they happen. The system, of course, raises civil liberty issues, but seems to work perfectly, that is until Anderton is fingered for a murder. The rest of the movie, Anderton tries to not only prove that he is innocent, but also that he was set up, possibly by an oily Department of Justice figure who is investigating Precrime before it goes national after an election, played by Colin Farrell. Directed by Steven Spielberg, Minority Report plays as both a "Whodunnit?" and a futuristic exercise of science fiction. Much time was spent on designing the Washington, DC of the 2050s, including cars that run on magnets, virtual reality stations, and much more throughout the film. The most interesting design is of the "sick sticks" used by cops to bring down criminals. The blueish tint given to the film also gives us a cold feeling, a future that is not as loving or as hospitable as the time we live in, another trait of a Dick story. A wonderful movie the works for both the crime buff and the science fiction fan.5 years ago
Minority Report is one of the top films of 2002
10/10 I read a lot of previous posts about this movie. This is one of the best films of the year, and of recent years. This is a perfect blend of action, suspense, thrills and film-noir. The plot is intelligent and fresh. People saying it is not original must have slept through the movie. Tom Cruise is fantastic, Colin Farrell is amazing, as well as Samantha Morton. Spielberg again proves that he is the master of cinema. A truly great director. I'll agree, the ending was a little too happy, but not worth complaining about. This film is not about product placement as previously suggested, it is simply a entertaining and yet realistic glimpse of what our future may look like, as advertising becomes more advanced and intrusive. The film creates many moral questions and issues, and should leave you thinking. Is being arrested for doing something you actually havn't commited yet fair? It is worth seeing again and again. As a film lover and critic, i can say it is one amazing movie.5 years ago
One of the best/most complex science fiction films
5/10 Steven Spielberg sets Minority Report in the near future of 2054, in which the technology is advanced, but not far-fetched. Cars can drive themselves and ride up elevators, computers come with holograms as a user interface, and stores recognize you from your eyeball scan. As all science fiction fans know, however, the genre is not about technology but about ideas. The big idea for Minority Report is based on a short story by the venerable Philip K. Dick. In this future, there is a "pre-crime" unit in the police force, which revolves around three psychics who are able to see violent crimes before they occur. These visions are projected in a flat screen panel and manipulated by detectives with the grace of a symphony conductor. Equipped with futuristic stun guns, jet packs, and search robots, these cops then arrest and intern the criminals before the crimes are committed.5 years ago
We learn all this in the first ten minutes of the movie. After this introduction, the plot really starts when Detective John Anderton (Tom Cruise) finds out that the precogs saw him kill someone, someone that he has never met. He finds himself in a race. With the forced recruitment of a precog, Agatha (Samantha Morton), he must clear his name before the predetermined murder. All the while, his old buddies, now helped with a special agent from the FBI (Colin Farrell), are trying to track him down.
Spielberg, with Janusz Kaminski, his cinematographer for many films, have crafted a visually stunning movie. The special effects are seamlessly incorporated of the world they created. The muted blues echo the style of black & white film noirs. John Anderton is similar to noir's morally ambiguous characters--a good cop with an illegal habit that is forced (by circumstances and desire) to betray the very things he loves.
But this is not just a special effects or mystery movie. The characters, all well drawn, are supremely acted by the cast. Tom Cruise is a good physical actor and he shows it here. By the way he sits or walks, we can intuit the grief and confusion that's going through him. Samantha Morton does a good job of portraying a haunted young lady who has seen too much. Colin Farrell skillfully balances the ambitious and professional sides of his character. As always, Max von Sydow authoritatively plays the respected father figure.
This is one of my favorite Science Fiction films. I would also recommend the following films. These (I think) influenced Minority Report.
"The Maltese Falcon" ~ film noir "A Clockwork Orange" ~ science fiction "Blade Runner" ~ science fiction (also based on a Dick story)
***** out of *****