Oblivion ★★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

Before starting this movie, a friend of mine said there was the ability to watch it without dialogue, just the score, and I spent most of the movie really wishing I was watching that version. Because it is a beautiful movie, with a combination of gleaming, slightly unsettling corporate sci-fi and loving nature photography that's really striking, and the music is even better. It's a beautiful lush synth score from M83, epic in just the right way, unique. I wish I could have just focused on that it.

The plot was extremely silly and twisty in a certain sci-fi way (clones are involved), but entertaining enough. The words they used to explain it, though, were nonsensical, and knowing that there was a chance I could have just not heard them made me so wistful. I'm pretty sure the explanation for what was going on in my head would have been better than the provided one. It's always so frustrating when films are like this - when the characters don't hang together, when the motivations aren't coherent, when shortcuts are taken to establish what needs to be done with the plot, and that's not even mentioning a final scene that undercuts all that came before about this particular Tom Cruise being the special version. It could have worked, and I bet it would have worked better with just the score.

On the other hand, it would still have the fatal flaw of a lot of recent Tom Cruise movies: that every female character he's put against is at least 20 years younger than he is. We get it, Tom, you want to pretend you're in your 30s, but you're not, and the women in this movie (both romantic interests for him) are. It makes all the dynamics much weirder then they should be - either they're too young for the original mission that sent Tom Cruise to space, or he's too old. (Also, it brings up weird questions about Cruise and Kurylenko's relationship pre-whatever-the-hell-happened in their original mission - how old was she? And then Tom Cruise abandons her in his special Real Man Lake House, complete with lovingly worn baseball and baseball glove, to give birth and raise a child on her own, even though he knows there's a whole big group of human survivors who could help her? God, the ending to this movie sucks.)

Anyway, not an entire waste of time, but if I ever watch this again it'll be for the music.