Release Date: April 27th, 2007 by Paramount Pictures.
The Cast: Nicholas Cage, Julianne Moore, Jessica Biel, Tomas Kretschmann, Tory Kittles, José Zúñiga, Jim Beaver.
Directed by Lee Tamahori.
BASIC PREMISE: Cris Johnson (Cage), a magician who can see two minutes into the future, must save his new girlfriend, Liz (Biel), from being killed by terrorists while FBI agent Callie Ferris (Moore) pursues him to help stop the terrorists from detonating a nuclear device. Loosely based on the short story “The Golden Man” by Philip K. Dick.
ENTERTAINMENT VALUE: Next combines action, sci-fi and even romance, but with not enough imagination and suspense like in the very similar movie from last year, Déjà Vu. The subplot regarding terrorists who plan on detonating a nuclear device never really fleshes out until briefly at the end of the second act. Cris can see two minutes into the future, although it’s not clear how and when he got this amazing ability to begin with. After successfully evading security on pursuit of him at a casino, he decides to use his special ability to approach a sexy young woman, Liz, at a diner. She lets him tag along with her on a road trip and, soon enough, they end up in bed in a motel. This contrived romance distracts from the real excitement which involves Cris trying to stop her imminent death when terrorists hold her hostage. Julianne Moore gives a very bland performance as an FBI agent who uses Cris to stop the terrorists from launching a nuclear device. Unfortunately, Nicholas Cage simply doesn’t have any charisma or appeal to successfully carry the role of Cris Johnson. Even his toupee doesn’t look right. Director Lee Tamahori does include a few slick, mind-blowing and exciting action sequences. However, the convoluted and contrived script by co-writers Gary Goldman, Jonathan Hensleigh and Paul Bernbaum lacks the imagination to make this a consistently thrilling sci-fi action film.
SPIRITUAL VALUE: None is required or desired.
INSULT TO YOUR INTELLIGENCE: None, as long as you suspend your disbelief.
NUMBER OF TIMES I CHECKED MY WATCH: 4
IN A NUTSHELL: Exciting action sequences, but an unimaginative, contrived and bland plot with very little suspense.
RECOMMENDED WAY TO WATCH: DVD
The "N" Menu