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Knowing (2009)

August 26, 2009

7/10 Harsh Futures

I was probably more excited to see this than I should have been, and I probably liked it more than I should have, but I’m fine with that. I was entertained. Glad to me in the minority.

Knowing is about an astrophysics professor at MIT who starts going bonkers when one day his son discovers a cryptic piece of paper written in 1959 that accurately predicts the date, location, and body count of every natural disaster, terrorist attack, swine flu outbreak, etc. that occurred up until present day 2009.

Now, here’s the problem with a storyline like this. For the most part, I dug it. It kept me interested, I wanted to know what would happen next and was pretty satisfied with the direction it was going in for the first hour and a half. Then there’s the last half-hour, the dreaded last half-hour where the script explains to you the source of everything that’s been going on, and guess what, it’s a horse shit explanation. Such is often the problem when you’re dealing with things that can’t happen in real life.

It kinda feels like something M. Night Shyamalan would have come up with. Not necessarily a compliment, but it’s got that vibe.

But it’s directed by Alex Proyas, the guy behind Dark City and The Crow (two freakin’ awesome movies) and also I, Robot (a surprisingly pretty decent movie, too), but it doesn’t really feel like an Alex Proyas movie. It’s pretty eerie in an “impending doom at all times” kind of way and there’s a handful of weird pale guys in black trench coats behind everything, which are both Proyas trademarks, but I don’t know, it just feels too Hollywood for me. Dude needs to go ahead and make Dark City 2 already.

And of course, Nicolas Cage is in it as the paranoid dad. Now if you’ve been following this site for a bit, you might have picked up on how much I can’t fucking stand Nic Cage. From his outrageous overracting, his refusal to get a proper haircut, his “I’m hot shit, I can be an action star if I want to even though no one else thinks I am, I’m related to Francis Ford Coppola and I won an Oscar” attitude, and his stupid fucking name that I swear was taken from an unlockable Mortal Kombat character. But Nic toned it down in this one. There’s the arbitrary screaming fits at inappropriate times here and there, but that’s to be expected. Wasn’t bad enough to the point where I couldn’t look past it.

So keep it up, Nic-o. You’re on the right track.

I can see how other people might not exactly think this is a “good” movie, but every once in a while one of these “bad” movies throws me for a loop and I actually end up liking it. Knowing‘s one of these tricky bastards, and even though you’ll definitely need to take the last half-hour with a grain of salt, make that a mound of salt, it’s a cool trip I enjoyed taking.

And that’s about it. Got my Nic Cage rant out of my system, spread the word about Dark City; mission accomplished.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. August 26, 2009 8:04 am

    Don’t understand why everyone bashes the ‘cage so much! Granted he’s got more average movies on his resumé but you can’t knock the good shit like Face/Off, The Weatherman, Matchstick Men, Lord of War, Adaptation, Wilt at Heart…

    Just wish he wouldn’t agree to, let alone actively beg for, roles in pish like Ghost Rider!

    • August 26, 2009 8:41 am

      Just can’t stand the guy. Haven’t seen a good deal of those movies you listed actually, except for Adaptation, which is one of two movies I actually liked him in, the other being Raising Arizona. It’s just beyond me how many shitty movies he continues to put out and how he always insists on making an ass of himself, like that shit in The Rock where he’s on the floor yelling “I’m gonna gut you like a fish, boy!” Just shut the fuck up, man. Calm your shit.

      Will give those movies a look though, putting them on Netflix right now.

  2. Ryan permalink
    August 29, 2009 7:41 am

    I can’t believe you gave this a 7. You’re completely correct that the first half of this movie is good and intriguing, but the last half and particularly the ending was so bad, so dumb and half baked I would be surprised if this director isn’t living on the street from now on. Aliens? Of course, that explains everything. What a crappy ending. And I actually like nic cage for the most part.

    • August 31, 2009 9:32 am

      Haha. Yeah, might have been a bit generous, but except for the last half hour, I liked it. Think it got that 7 because I didn’t utterly hate Nic Cage in it for once. I stand by my review.

  3. JPurcell permalink
    October 29, 2009 10:14 am

    I don’t really like Nic Cage either, but he was rather good in The Wicker Man.

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