Tom Cruise's Oblivion released April 19th, 2013 is an American Sci-fi film. In North America, the film earned $37.1 million during the course of its opening weekend, including $5.5 million derived of IMAX screenings from 323 theaters, making it Cruise's best North American opening outside of the Mission: Impossible film series and War of the Worlds. As of April 28, 2013, Oblivion has grossed $164.3 million internationally.
Oblivion: A Feeling of Deja Vu
Tom Cruise plays Jack Harper, a late-21st century technician who flies around a post-apocalyptic Earth in a cool spaceship. Jack is troubled by dreams of a woman he's never met, set in a time before the war between humans and an alien race that ravaged the surface of our planet. Those dreams are interfering with what might otherwise be a pretty peaceful life for our hero: In 2077, he's been stationed with a partner, Victoria (Andrea Riseborough), in a gleaming penthouse apartment in the clouds above Earth, where they make love like bunnies at night and she serves as Mission Control for his travels around the planet by day. He's a drone repairman, zipping through the sky patrolling for threats to the robot defenders of a water-harvesting system that is keeping the last of our race alive, millions of miles away, on a moon of Saturn.
An hour into the film Oblivion begins peeling back the layers it has carefully draped, and writer/director Kosinski begins exposing his influences - a spray of vintage Sci-fi classics including Wall-E, The Matrix and The Omega Man, as well as Planet of the Apes and even (gulp) Independence Day. There are a few other films I could mention, but that would give away too much.
As Jack rushes headlong through the film's second hour, you'll likely feel a flush of déjà vu: There are no themes in Oblivion that haven't been explored in more detail on other screens in other theaters. But Kosinksi and his co-writers Karl Gajdusek and Michael Arndt have made an eloquent case for derivation as art. While showing us nothing new, they've constructed a kind of shrine to these older films that's as elaborate as it is sincere.
Tom Cruise Saves The Day by his Performance
The acting gets the job done. Olga Kurylenko (Quantum of Solace) is effective as an enigmatic survivor from that crashed ship. Morgan Freeman shows up as well, doing his best Morgan Freeman But pay close attention to Riseborough as Victoria, Jack's teammate and lover. There are layers to her character that the script doesn't address, leaving it up to the actress to show us rather than tell. She's marvelous - I can't wait to see more of this actress.
And then there's Cruise, the studly loner, doing what could be interpreted as an additional homage - to the Charlton Heston archetype in all those 1970s sci-fi chestnuts that Kosinski and crew obviously love so much. One of the things I like about this actor is his uncanny ability to pick his projects - not always for their quality, but certainly for how he'll fit in them. In Oblivion, he's chosen wisely.
Oblivion received mixed to Positive reviews. The film has a 56% "Rotten" rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on 182 reviews, with the site's consensus stating "Visually striking but thinly scripted, Oblivion benefits greatly from its strong production values and an excellent performance from Tom Cruise." The film has an average score of 5.9/10. On Metacritic the film holds a score of 53 based on 40 reviews, indicating "mixed or average reviews".