The author of “The Twilight Saga” and the director of “Gattaca” just had a baby – an unintentionally laughable, nonsensical, ugly baby.
“The Host” takes place in a future time when an alien race called the Souls invade Earth. Rather than blow up the White House or zap people with lasers, the Souls take over human bodies and use them to turn the planet back into a clean, safe place. They may have good intentions, but clearly claiming bodies without human consent doesn’t fly and the few that manage to escape the colonization form a resistance.
Melanie Stryder (Saoirse Ronan) is part of that resistance until she’s captured by a Seeker (Diane Kruger) and fitted with her very own Soul, Wanderer. Wanderer assumes control, but Melanie isn’t about to give up that easily and while Wanderer tries to obey the Seeker and use Melanie’s memories to track down the remainder of the resistance, those memories and Melanie’s powers of persuasion make Wanderer doubt the Soul’s cause. Using their shared body, the two team up to find Melanie’s little brother, Jamie (Chandler Canterbury), and boyfriend, Jared (Max Irons), and do what they can to keep as many people and Souls alive.
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Once in a while you need a movie that lets you just sit back, relax and enjoy the show. Sure, these films can be rather mindless, but spoon-fed entertainment can make for a fun night out. On the other hand, that’s no excuse to take a notable novel premise and never bring it to its intellectual and emotional potential. With highly entertaining and thoughtful movies like Gattaca and The Truman Show on his resume, you’d expect something rather exceptional from writer-director Andrew Niccol. However, with In Time he’s got that brilliant idea, but never digs deep, leaving us with nothing more than a high concept.
Sometime in the future, people are genetically engineered to stop aging at 25-years-old. At birth, each person’s given one free year and then the moment he or she turns 25, the timer on his or her forearm starts counting down. Time is literally money so the only way the population can avoid timing out and maintain a living is by working for more time or by stealing it.
Will Salas (Justin Timberlake) resides in Dayton, one of the poorest zones in the country, a place where everyone lives day-to-day and hopes to get paid before their hours run out. When a wealthy man stumbles into Will’s part of town, rather than continue to enjoy his near-immortal existence, he opts to take his own life, but not before giving Will his 100+ years. With his newfound time, Will heads to New Greenwich, a place where people have so much time, they hire round-the-clock bodyguards to protect them. However, Will isn’t just there to play and enjoy his fortune, rather spread the wealth and defy the system.
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