Entertainment Today and Beyond

Never Met a Zombi I Didn’t Like…

KNOWING Review

knowingKNOWING is one interesting film. Thought provoking, intense, involving and a tad bit silly, but I must admit when all was said and done I really enjoyed it. While watching Knowing I could help but think of 1988’s Miracle Mile, an end of the world thriller that I was totally involved in despite its share of implausibilities. 

Nicolas Cage stars as astrophysics professor John Koestler who is grieving the loss of his late wife. After his son Caleb’s (Chandler Canterbury) school digs up a 50-year-old time capsule with individual student drawings of what the earth might look like in five decades from 1959, the submission that Caleb receives to study is a bit different from the rest. His time capsule envelope contains a piece of paper (shown being drawn by a strange girl in the film’s opening sequence five decades prior) that contains a serious of random numbers. After seeing the numbers 911, John becomes interested in the message and soon discovers that these numbers have predicted 50 of the world great disasters over the past 50 years, with three more to come.

Soon John is racing around the east coast trying to head these impending calamities off. The first is a plane crash disaster (shown partly in the trailers) that really took me by surprise. Shot in a rained soaked background using hand held camera the sequence was quite the stunner. The angle of the planes trajectory going down on an interstate road is like nothing I have seen on film and the impact was quite jarring. The second nerve rattling sequence involves John attempting to head off a subway car accident in NYC –  it is just about equally effective. Even though there’s extensive CGI, the effect is still quite powerful and exciting. At this point in the film I was totally involved. Then, about halfway through the story, a women named Diana (Rose Byrne) and her daughter (Lara Robinson) are drawn into the conflict, as are a mysterious group of strange blond men, giving the story another wrinkle.

As for the third disaster, that’s a surprise – let’s just say, director Alex Proyas (Dark City, I Robot) doesn’t play it safe. I commend Summit Entertainment for allowing the director the freedom of ending Knowing the way he did. It is unlikely to have the same conclusion if one of the major studios released the film. As for Cage, I’m a fan. While many people have piled on the somewhat eccentric actor for playing everything over the top, I enjoy his work and he does a fine job as the lead.

Overall, Knowing throws a lot against the wall, including themes of religious prophecy, science fiction and the question of random choice verses predestination. Even though some of it got to be a bit silly in the third act, the sum of the story’s whole won me over and I liked the journey Knowing had taken me on. Kudos to director Proyas for delivering something different to our local multiplexes. I’ll gladly substitute a movie’s flaws for the privilege to think any day of the week. 3.75 Zombies out of 5.

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March 23, 2009 - Posted by | Reviews | , ,

1 Comment »

  1. I love your last line of this review. I agree with the sentiment, even if I might not acknowledge it often enough to myself.
    The Rake
    http://thefilmnest.com

    Comment by thebsk | March 25, 2009 | Reply


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