By Darin Skaggs
Doug Liman’s Edge of Tomorrow has been through the ringer and back again. It bombed at the box office, it has Tom Cruise who is a turn off for some reason and now has been given a completely different title. This is all very strange because this film is a great action flick with good performances. It also takes on some interesting sci-fi elements as well as a look at how a bad person can grow up with only the passage of time and a bit of life experience.
The story begins with Lt. Col. Bill Cage being told he will be forced into battle the next day as the world is in the midst of a war with an alien race. He fights it but despite all his efforts he is forced into battle. While there he kills an alien, gets its blood on him and then dies. Suddenly he wakes up the previous day. He is understandably confused. Soon he finds out that the blood that hit him was from an alien that can restart time and now he has this power to restart the day every time he dies. With the help of Rita Vrataski, someone who has held this power previous and won a big battle because of it, they try and try again to take down the alien race once and for all.
This film is fantastic; it has been compared to Harold Ramis’ Groundhog Day. And it is pretty much Groundhog Day with action and aliens. There are scenes where you know he has pretty much given up on winning the battle, other scenes you realize that this isn’t the first time the day has gone the way it is going. It mirrors Groundhog Day so much you might question how much of this film is fully original thoughts in the little moments. Though the film is made so well most of those views will just fade away. There are scenes that are pretty funny and others that are really touching because you know what Cage has gone through. There are a few ideas that don’t work like in the third act some people begin to trust Cage that haven’t before because the story needs them too. The ending is ambiguous because you don’t know if the conclusion is good or bad for the characters.
Tom Cruise, who does not get enough respect these days, gives a great performance as Cage. He begins as a man who has a big head but is also weak in the knees at the thought of danger. And because of his big head will blackmail whoever is making him do what he does want to. Cage throughout the film grows as a person. By the climax of the film, even by the middle, he is on a mission every single day to save as many lives as he can. Other supporting characters do great work, Bill Paxton is very funny and Emily Blunt is a great strong female character.
Edge of Tomorrow is a wonderful action film. It is a whole lot of fun, some of the best times you can have with movies. It further proves to the cynical that Tom Cruise will be forever praised as a brilliant actor. It borrows from other films but does it so well you can’t help but enjoy yourself.