Lively, entertaining reviews of, and essays on, old and newer films and everything relating to them, written by professional author William Schoell.

Thursday, September 16, 2010


SURROGATES (2009). Director: Jonathan Mostow.

Fascinating science fiction film, based on a graphic novel, deals with a future world in which people stay home in bed and live out their lives with their minds inside more attractive -- and comparatively invulnerable -- robot bodies called surrogates. Tom Greer (Bruce Willis) investigates when surrogates begin to get murdered and their human hosts die along with them. Surrogates is a natural progression from such stories as "Marionettes Inc." and certain Twilight Zone episodes and other science fiction stories -- not to mention The Picture of Dorian Gray! The film is well-acted and very well-directed by Mostow, and has several well-crafted action sequences to go along with its nifty premise. Ironically, Bruce Willis looks better as his real self than he does as the blond-haired surrogate. Surrogates may be derivative, as some have charged, but it also introduces some interesting situations and sub-texts of its own.

Verdict: One of the better science fiction films of recent years. ***1/2.

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