Cover Art and Menus: 4/10
I feel bored just thinking about this DVD cover, or any of the other billions that are just like it. Flash that star’s face on the front and something in the background and kill any kind of potential creativity whatsoever! The menu is the same, just standard but easy to navigate.
- Director Commentary – I like this director so listening to him talk about the movie is entertaining. It actually makes the movie a bit better…I know, that’s not right!! But that’s how it works sometimes when the movie isn’t perfect to begin with.
- Knowing All The Making Of A Futuristic Thriller – This is a standard making-of feature with interviews with the director and cast. It’s pretty packaged but you do learn a few things about the story.
- Visions Of The Apocalypse – Experts talk about the end of the world. It’s pretty fun, cheery, and one scientist guy seems a little giddy at the thought of the earth being engulfed by the sun…:)
The Movie: 6/10
It’s hokey. The plot is hand fed to us as if we have never seen a movie before. It’s got some stiff wooden acting. The dialogue is flat, at best. The ideology is questionably preachy, pushy, eye rolling goodness. I like it.
That’s right, I like Knowing. I understand that some movies that are not good are REALLY not good. There are elements that add up in my mind like a formula. With the story, performances, pace, editing, style, ideas, emotion, characters, special effects, details, and more either coming together, fighting against each other, or just not there at all, my mind is often a jumble while I’m watching a movie. With Knowing, I started with some skepticism, the jumble began, and then I let it go.
I knew right away that this was not going to be a perfect movie. Cage isn’t engaging for me anymore, and the story was being handed to me like instructions from the doctor for how to pee in a cup. You know what I mean? I know how to figure out that a son isn’t close to his father from other devices, rather than having a character say it out loud. I know how to infer that a wife/mother has died without someone being forced to spell it out for me. These are some of the things that started to turn me off, and then I started getting interested in the ideas, coincidence, religion, science, randomness, etc. I dig these big questions so that flipped the switch of criticism off and I started going with the flow.
Knowing isn’t great, let’s be honest. As a film it’s got a lot of technical, acting, plot device issues, and if the bigger picture hadn’t caught my attention, those things would have been overwhelmingly distracting. I admit it, I got swept up in the adventure of tracking down a woman who might have predicted the end of the world. OK, it sounds corny, it is, but it isn’t, but it is.
Oh, I can’t explain exactly why I would recommend this movie. I know a lot of people will find it completely crap. Other people will feel hammered by the big philosophical ideas and science. So, take it for what it is, either an adventure with some big special effects that are awesome, or a search for meaning in life. I don’t need or want a film maker to TELL me what to think about these things, but I do appreciate an attempt at opening up the question for me to think about yet again.
Meaning of life? Why are we here? Is there a plan? If there is a bigger plan that’s full of meaning and purpose, what is the significance of dirty dishes, laundry, pimples, and calories?
Audio & Video: 9/10 (by Ascully)
I usually start my little audio/video roundup with the video section, but here the audio is the star of the show, so I am about to change things up.
The DTS HD Master Audio soundtrack really delivers. From the opening credits which uses the surround speakers to envelope you in a strange whispering effect, to some of the big action set peices which will blow you away quite literally. This is pure demo material. The mix is pretty loud and heavy on bass so a little fine tuning of the volume on your reciever will be in order. Once you have it dialed in though it’s one of the most impressive soundtracks so far this year.
You will also be hard pressed to find fault with the video quality on this disc. The film was shot entirely digitally on the awesome new Red One digital video camera. This means a nice crisp image which is completely devoid of film grain. Stylistically though its not the best looking movie, with a lot of drab interior shots, but when the special effects kick in eye candy is the order of the day.
Overall Knowing was a pleasant surprise for me. It’s not a great movie, but it’s got some good ideas that you will be talking about long after the end credits. A perfect summer Blu-Ray for your collection.
It’s a rental for me, so the value isn’t an issue. I have seen it pretty cheap online, but still, this isn’t a movie I will want in my collection for all time. If you are a Cage fanatic, you will have to put it on your shelf, but for anyone else who just wants a flick to watch on a rainy afternoon, get that online rental queue ready!
Overall Score 6/10