WRITTEN BY: Christopher McQuarrie, Jez Butterworth, John-Henry Butterworth DIRECTED BY: Doug Liman
STARRING: Tom Cruise, Emily Blunt, Bill Paxton
RATING: 4 stars
Action films are often guilty of having weak plots, while science fiction films are often so convoluted that they barely make sense. But sometimes, you get an action-packed science fiction film that has the right amount of fight scenes, character development and a clever plot that it is an absolute delight to watch. That is what Edge of Tomorrow brings to audiences. It is visually stunning with some great-looking alien creatures, has some thrilling fight sequences that will keep you on the edge of your seat, and for the most part, its story is not too predictable.
Based on a novel by Hiroshi Sakurazaka, the film is set in the future. Humanity is at war with aliens who are trying to take over the world, but Major William Cage (Tom Cruise) is a coward and would rather work as a military public relations representative than fight on the front. His plans are eventually thwarted and he is forced to go into battle without any training, effectively rendering it a suicide mission. But, when he does indeed die, Cage wakes up and must relive the day over and over again while keeping his memories of each day. It seems no one else has any idea what is happening, but Cage soon realises that he might be able to change the direction of the war if he can just get the day to go right. So, he seeks the help of war heroine Rita (Emily Blunt).
Although it is a serious science fiction and action film, there are some good laughs that stem from the odd situation Cage finds himself in, which is a credit to the writers Christopher McQuarrie, Jez Butterworth and John-Henry Butterworth. Such moments include when he tries to convince Master Sergeant Farell (Bill Paxton) of what is really happening and when he does start to convince some people of what he knows as he shows off what appear to be psychic powers. Even some of the death scenes are funny in a black humour kind of way.
I have often struggled to engage with Cruise's recent action films, but Edge of Tomorrow is by far his best work in years. Blunt is a fantastically strong and believable heroine, and helps elevate the film. Paxton is hilarious and steals a few scenes along the way. The remaining supporting cast are also quite good and the script is so strong that audiences will sympathise with them. Among the cast are Australians (who keep their accents) Noah Taylor as a scientist and Kick Gurry as a soldier.
Edge of Tomorrow is a fun film worth seeing on the big screen.