Edge of Tomorrow is one of the better movies to come out of a (mostly) disappointing summer 2014 although due to a generic title change and less than stellar advertising, didn’t quite catch on with audience (it did manage to cross the $100M mark domestically, however). It’s a fun film from start to finish and well worth at least a rental if not outright day one purchase.
Edge of Tomorrow
Genre(s): Science Fiction, Action, Adventure
Warner Bros. | PG13 – 113 min. – $35.99 | October 7, 2014
THE MOVIE – 4.5/5
Edge of Tomorrow…aka…Live Die Repeat…aka…Live Die Repeat: Edge of Tomorrow… oh, whatever, is easily one of the funnest and better movies to come out of a so-so 2014 summer and outside of the Mission: Impossible franchise, one of Tom Cruise’s better outings in some time. It’s a unique enough plot, albeit combining Starship Troopers and Groundhog Day, and is all around entertaining from start to finish.
The story, which is based upon the novel ‘All You Need is Kill’, is centered on a military spokesman Cage (TOM CRUISE) who has no combat experience but is commanded by General Brigham (BRENDAN GLEESON), to be in the front line of a pivotal battle against an alien species who have invaded and plan a worldwide domination and eradication of the inhabitants of Earth. Cage is stunned and makes the mistake of blackmailing the general and for his troubles is arrested and wakes up on a military base where Master Sergeant Farrell (BILL PAXTON) has papers that Cage is a deserter/coward and is forced into battle along with others in the colorful platoon.
However, after their ship is shot, they discover the battle is no cake walk and apparently the enemy was waiting for them causing mass casualties. During the firefight, which Cage can’t help not knowing even how to take the safety off his guns, his eyes set on Rita (EMILY BLUNT) aka “Full Metal Bitch” before she ultimately is killed. Cage manages to survive long enough to use a mortor killing one of the aliens but Cage is killed in the process.
Of course, you’ve seen the trailers and amazingly he awakens back at the military base and relives the same day. After getting his bearings (somewhat), he discovers that Rita had the same experience before losing it and now the pair, through trial and error, must work together to stop the invasion because “tomorrow” the alien race will win and it’s… game over man, game over!
I won’t delve any further into the plot only to say that, unlike Groundhog Day, there is a reason Cage is able to relive the same day and thankfully the movie is able to set some ground rules that could lead him to losing the ability as well as the inability to go to any commanding officers as they would rightfully believe he’s nutty or, if they believe him, be captured for dissection.
Helmed by Doug Liman, whose proven to be more than an adequate action director as demonstrated in movies like The Bourne Identity and Mr. & Mrs. Smith, provides for effective direction with well done action scenes that didn’t feel like some CGI fest taking a front seat over story and characters. Thankfully here we get two main characters we feel and can root for and even though the age differential between Cruise and Blunt is substantial, the two do share some great chemistry and for Cruise’s part, his comedic timing, dark as it is, is great. Also breathtaking is we get to see Cruise not being a balls-out hero early on and having to grow into the role.
Basically, Edge of Tomorrow is one fun hell of a movie; nothing more, nothing less and one of the gems of summer 2014 perhaps behind Guardians of the Galaxy. I won’t say the movie will rewrite the action formula or anything but it’s an efficient action flick, refreshingly clocking in under two hours (in an era where filmmakers seem to think 150-minutes is acceptable) and just a fun time through and through. If you’re a fan of sci-fi and/or Cruise, this is a day one blind purchase.
SPECIAL FEATURES – 3.0/5
The Blu-ray comes with a matted slip cover, inside is a redemption code for the Digital Copy as well as the standard DVD Copy.
Operation Downfall: Adrenaline Cut (2:34; HD) are scenes from the movie culled together where Cruise and company kick ass.
Storming the Beach (8:59; HD) is a behind-the-scenes featurette on the beach sequence and its obvious influence by Normandy in WWII.
Weapons of the Future (8:25; HD) outlines the weaponry used in the film including the heavy exo-suits.
Creatures Not of This World (5:38; HD) looks at the alien enemies and the visual effects done to create them.
On the Edge with Doug Liman (42:37; HD) is a lengthy featurette and is more or less day in the life of the director as he brings the film to life and working with Tom Cruise. It’s a well made BTS feature and easily the most expansive feature put out by Warner in some time.
Deleted Scenes (7:38; HD) are a selection of scenes either cut down or removed for a variety of reasons, though presumably for pacing issues. Unfortunately these do not include the Jeremy Piven scenes…
Previews – Mad Max: Fury Road, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies
VIDEO – 5.0/5
Edge of Tomorrow drops onto Blu-ray (MPEG-4 AVC codec) presented in its original theatrical 2.40 widescreen aspect ratio and a 1080p high-definition transfer. Not entirely surprisingly, though hardly a given (see Transcendence), the picture here looks incredible with sharp detail levels, good color dispersion and just an all around clean appearance – no obvious signs of artifacting, banding or pixilation – giving that theatrical look at home.
AUDIO – 5.0/5
Warner has provided the film with a 7.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio track which, as expected, is dynamic showing off a wide range from the softer/quieter moments to the action-packed scenes/sequences. Most impressive is the depth allowing a nice desertion of audio such as explosions, gunfire and fights. This is one of the best audio tracks and, as with the video, is reference quality.
OVERALL – 4.5/5
Overall, Edge of Tomorrow is one of the better movies to come out of a (mostly) disappointing summer 2014 although due to a generic title change and less than stellar advertising, didn’t quite catch on with audience (it did manage to cross the $100M mark domestically, however). It’s a fun film from start to finish and well worth at least a rental if not outright day one purchase. The Blu-ray released by Warner Brothers offers up incredible audio and video transfers while the bonus material is respectable if not low key.