DVD Review: Eagle Eye (Blu-ray)

Eagle Eye
Blu-ray Edition
Directed by D.J. Caruso
Starring Shia LaBeouf, Michelle Monaghan, Billy Bob Thorton, Rosario Dawson, Michael Chiklis
Paramount Home Entertainment
Release date: December 27, 2008

Let’s get this out of the way upfront — Eagle Eye isn’t a bad movie. I’ve seen it listed on more than a few “Worst of 2008″ lists, and I just don’t agree with that assessment. Trust me, there’s much worse floating around out there.

What it is is a middle of the road “Big Brother” paranoia thriller with serviceable acting and a bunch of rather fun set pieces and action sequences. That’s it; nothing more, nothing less. Where it suffers is in its woefully late-to-the-ball timing. If this flick had been released 15 to 20 years ago, it would have worked a lot better.

The film hinges on the audience being pulled into the paranoid realization that we can be watched, tracked, contacted, and controlled at all time due to the alarming amount of technology we allow into our daily lives. The problem is, as a society, we already know that. Who out there under the age of 60 isn’t well aware that much of our lives are out on the internet for the taking? I’m guessing not many”¦ So without being able to build that paranoia in the audience, the “thriller” part of this thriller just doesn’t work.

Let’s be honest with ourselves here: War Games was probably the last time this notion was really going to fly.

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DVD Review: ‘Eagle Eye’ 2-Disc Special Edition
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Eagle Eye
2-Disc Special Edition
Directed by D.J. Caruso
Starring Shia Labeouf, Michelle Monaghan, Rosario Dawson, Michael Chiklis, Billy Bob Thornton
Paramount Home Entertainment
Released Date: December 27, 2008

Eagle Eye is the next adventure in technological thriller genre, following Jerry Shaw (Shia Labeouf) who after the death of his twin brother Ethan finds a bunch of money in his bank account and an apartment full of military gear and weaponry. Almost immediately, he’s contacted by a mysterious woman’s voice who tells him to leave immediately, the FBI is coming to arrest him. He, of course, think she’s insane and ignores the warning, only to be quickly arrested and interrogated thoroughly by Agent Tom Morgan (Billy Bob Thornton). After this, he’s contacted again by the mysterious voice and this time, not surprisingly, he’s a little more believing, although still very skeptical. She leads him on a daring and dangerous escape where he ultimately meets up with Rachel Holloman (Michelle Monaghan), who is also being directed by the voice, who is threatening that if Rachel doesn’t do what she’s told, her son will be murdered. From then on out, the two follow the voice’s instructions, while trying to figure out what it wants and what’s going on, as well as how it ties to Jerry’s deceased twin brother.

Eagle Eye is the embodiment of what a modern day action movie is. The incredible amount of technology used as the framing for the story sets the table perfectly for that sort of sub-genre.

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Box Office Buzz: ‘Eagle Eye’ Swoops Into Number 1

For the love of all that is holy, thank GOODNESS, it finally happened, a movie that I am vaguely interested in (now that I think about it) finally took number one away from the tripe that has been rolled out recently, and managed to do so with a modest intake as well.

With a weekend gross of just under $30 million, Eagle Eye, starring Shia LaBeouf and Michelle Monaghan , took the number one spot. It’s the first time in seven weeks that a movie has made this much, since the third week of The Dark Knight.

Coming in at number two was another new release, Nights in Rodanthe, starring Richard Gere and Diane Lane. I know nothing about this movie, except that Gere is in it, which probably makes it a romance. However, though it might have scored number two, it did so with only $13.5 million.

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Movie Review: Eagle Eye

Eagle Eye
Directed by D.J. Caruso
Starring Shia LaBeouf, Michelle Monaghan, Billy Bob Thorton, Rosario Dawson
Rated PG-13
Release date: September 26, 2008

Boom, Bang, Vroom, Huh?, Crash, Kablam = Eagle Eye. A true escapist movie, Eagle Eye is explosive fun, as long as you don’t think too much and you don’t mind commercials.

Jerry Shaw (Shia LaBeouf), an underachieving slacker, is blackmailed into a criminal situation, directed only by a woman over the phone that seems able to access all the electronics connected by some kind of network. Rachel Hollowman (Michelle Monaghan) is driven into the same situation with Jerry when her son is threatened. FBI Agent Thomas Morgan (Billy Bob Thorton) and Air Force Investigator Zoe Perez (Rosario Dawson) are assigned to investigate Shaw, and, as a consequence, Rachael. They all are led by the seat of their pants on the path the woman on the phone decides.

Eagle Eye is a two-hour chase scene. Jerry and Rachael are chased by the FBI, the Air Force, and the woman over the phone. The FBI and Air Force are hampered by the outstanding power of the woman on the phone. The cat and mouse game often drew me to the edge of my seat. There is a particular scene involving luggage that made me laugh and dodge in my seat.

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