movies: source code

make every second countThere are Thinking Movies and Not Thinking Movies... Source Code seems to be what happens when a Thinking Movie and a Not Thinking Movie reproduce.

And knowing it's from the same director as Moon makes perfect sense... although there really isn't much overlap between the two stories (and Duncan Jones didn't write Source Code), there's still a similar thematic vibe to the movies. The theme of identity and what makes you who you are.

All of that is obviously where the Thinking part comes in... and it does get more thoughtful as it progresses, right up until the very end which is very much one of those endings that you could discuss all the way home.

The Not Thinking part is predominantly Jake Gyllenhaal running around on a train trying to discover who is going to blow it up.

There's also more than a few similarities between Source Code and Deja Vu from a few years back...

Delving into slight spoiler territory for a moment, the whole premise of the movie is that Jake's character gets to relive the last eight minutes of somebody else's life over and over and over to work out who blows up the train... however because the event has already happened, and even though we're told that it's the first attack of potentially many, the stakes for Jake seem surprisingly low. Or at least I felt distanced from them because they weren't really real.

Because he's not really on the train but on the reconstructed memory of that train he can do anything, say anything, smack people around, whatever... and it just resets and he can start again. Essentially it's like Bill Murray trying to work out how to woo Andie MacDowell in Groundhog Day through a method of trial and error.

The only time the stakes really kick in is the very last loop... but I won't say any more about that...

Jake is very good in both the running around bits as well as the more cerebral parts that take part in the titular Source Code... but as I've said before (in relation to other movies obviously), Michelle Monaghan is pretty damn good with the minimal stuff she's given to do (which mostly seems to consist of following Jake around and being confused)... and Vera Farmiga is equally awesome (once again) as the slightly atypical military officer.

To be honest, as I mentioned, I was somewhere disengaged (not because it was bad, just because the movie seemed to be set up that way) from this movie for a lot of the 93 minute running time, but the final loop through the train journey and the end of the movie pretty much won me over.

yani's rating: 3 exploding trains out of 5

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