The Island (2005)


Michael Bay directs Ewan McGregor, Scarlett Johansson and Djimon Hounsou in this sci-fi actioner where two clones go on the run when they realise the utopia they wish to be sent to is actually the surgical table of a grim body part chop shop.

We need to talk about Michael Bay. Considered one of the worst big budget directors still working, the creative nadir of high concept blockbuster sausage making… I kinda like his stuff. In descending order of quality; The Rock, 13 Hours, Bad Boys, Bad Boys 2, Pearl Harbour, Armageddon and this are OTT, blindingly colourful, inspired casting, sexy romance fitted as standard, summer one watchers. None are great movies, all are way, way too long, and I’m not touching the Transformers series with a barge pole, but if you want kinetic, intense, glossy, mindless fun then Bay is your bae. This scavenges Michael Marshall-Smith’s cult novel Spares somewhat shamelessly (to the point where it is a closer adaptation than most legitimate book to movie conversions) to winning effect. The Logan’s Run first half is better than the The 39 Steps lite second section, the inspiration and excitement noticeably drops off once we enter the real world… it all just sputters to a conclusion eventually. But you get McGregor and Johansson mixing sweet and saucy nicely inbetween the leaden car chases and faltering face offs. Logic takes a back seat (how can McGregor break quite so much security undetected  in an surveillance environment that invades his very dreams earlier, for example?) sheen wins out. Sometimes extreme sheen is just about enough.


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