Alien D-Day Meets Groundhog Day
I’m going to recommend this as a decent sci-fi action spectacular. The story is interesting enough to carry it through to the end, and they spared no expense to bring the world to life.
I zapped off a couple of points for repetitiveness and going over the top, but still if you like sci-fi this film is worth it.
Now the question of militarism comes up, the “glory” of battle, the idea of cowardice to demonize pacifists. This is a controversial point, and the film fulfills its militant premise. War is the only way to save mankind with an alien foe of such genocidal ferocity. To fight back is justified, and this requires outside-the-box thinking.
While the military itself is largely incompetent, rigidly inflexible and the antagonist for much of the film, the lone wolf military men and women, the risk takers, the supermen are presented as the salvation of humanity. This sprouts from very dangerous historical underpinnings, but I think the film is sufficiently contemplative to present these ideas and to explore them.
There is heroic sacrifice, and this may be done to death at the multiplexes, but it’s seldom done well anymore. So you know the kind of movie you’re going to get. It’s going to be big. It’s going to have a twist or three, and heroism and combat are central.
With the time-displacement idea, resetting the day, it gets a bit video-gamey. I’m sure this was intended to appeal to hardcore video gamers who go on journeys much like Tom and company with the constantly-resetting, experiments, dying and reincarnation, as the typical game embodies. That’s where it got a bit repetitive. But the jump cuts pushed it along so that we didn’t dwell after the initial setups.
Other than Groundhog Day, we may be seeing the so-called inspiration of that Source Code film. I was not a fan there, and Edge of Tomorrow pulls it off better. The story logic is slightly improved, if such a trick can ever fly. It takes some generosity of spirit on the viewer’s part.