Passes the time - Mick Jordan

10 Points

Viewer Rating:Mick Jordan has rated Surrogates rating: 3 Star

Bruce Willis was recently described as 'Undirectable' by Kevin Smith – a director. However he hastily added that he meant this as a compliment pointing out that the only person who could tell Bruce Willis how to play Bruce Willis was – Bruce Willis, and that he has been doing so for over 25 years now. He is still a major star while most of his contemporaries have fallen by the way. Steven Seagal is apparently part of a reality show now and where is Jean-Claude Van Damme? But big stars no longer seem to be drawing in the big crowds and “Surrogates” has pretty much flopped at the box office taking in thirty million dollars against a cost of over eighty. It's not hard to see why, this is one of those films where the draw is in the high concept – the problem with that is that you have to know what the concept is to attract your interest and once you know – why see the film? In “Surrogates” the vast majority of the human population of the world are 'Operators' who stay all day every day in their apartments living their lives through mental and emotional links to surrogate robots who go out and about in the real world. This way no-one can come to any harm, if a “Surry” gets destroyed – just replace it and carry on. And so the operator can experience every thrill and danger of reality without ever suffering the consequences. Great idea – except now we know all about it what more is there to see? Well as it happens – a pretty entertaining film. The set-up is explained and moved on from very quickly in the opening credits and so the film can get straight into the plot. A weapon has been developed which can be used to kill the Operators by destroying the Surrogate. Bruce Willis is the cop who takes on the job of finding both the weapon and the people who are using it – via his own flowing haired surrogate. Meanwhile his wife Rosamund Pike (who is excellent in this) has locked herself permanently in her room and refuses to engage in life in any shape or form other than through her surrogate – as increasingly are more and more of the population. This emotional dependency between the operators and their surrogates is an obvious one but it can be interesting to see how different the real person behind the mannequin-perfect surrogate actually is when we've spent so much time with the latter. “Surrogates” isn't a great film but it's not bad, it has some decent action sequences, some nice visuals and plays around with a few interesting ideas. At 88 minutes it zips along nicely and is a harmless way to blow a tenner.

Review published on the 21 October 2009 10:31


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