The Movie: 7.5/10
What I didn’t like was that mind numbing explanation from a science type character to give us the low down on what we are seeing. What I did like, everything else (pretty much). What science stuff? This movie is about a soldier on a technological mission to help save lives through a new technology. I won’t give away too much, that wouldn’t be fair. What I will say is that it’s got one foot in Science Fiction and one foot in fantasy science. There are mentions of quantum physics which can bend any mind when all we want is a fun night at the movies. It’s not heavy handed though, so if they had just left out the blah blah blah of the scientist and given us the chance to just figure it out or even let it be more mysterious, that would have made it a better movie. As it is we are dummied through some of the more complex concepts and it lowers the pace as well as takes us out of that bubble of belief we have crawled into.
A soldier in the midst of a plan to thwart terrorist attacks on Chicago, that’s the heart of the story. What we get in addition to that is Gyllenhaal’s performance which I really enjoyed. We also get Vera Farmiga and Michelle Monaghan who are both enough reason to see this movie on their own. Farmiga is an officer and part of the experiment, her presence is part of our leading soldier’s connection to the outside world, outside his participation in this experiment. She’s brilliant at times with just the subtle move of her head, facial expressions, and restraint she elevates this movie. Monaghan plays an interesting part, if not an interesting character. She’s part of a sequence of events that need to be replayed, relived, over and over. The variations of how she delivers the same lines, her reactions, and the way she and Gyllenhaal work together also makes this a better movie. I would enjoy another drama with these three any time, any place!
Even if the concept needs a bit of time and effort to let it soak in, and I did find a few questions linger about the possibilities of what they are trying to string together as a science fiction type story, it’s still a really good movie experience. The pace is right on, the music is good, the dialogue (for the most part) is well thought out. There are moments when our leading man has to break free from what might be expected of how a person should react in a situation and it’s exciting, plain and simple. Gyllenhaal gets a chance to fight, cry, worry, be charming, funny, even a hint of romantic titter tatter. That’s what makes it feel so substantial. I say see it. Open your mind first, and then see it for the fun and excitement of a summer thriller with an angle we haven’t precisely seen before.
- Access Source Code – If you watch through the movie again you will get a lot of extras, everything from behind the scenes to trivial trivia that’s not even about the movie at all:) It’s well presented and easy to access the features as you go through the movie.
- Audio Commentary – It’s always good to have a commentary to hear the stories behind the story.
Cover Art and Menus: 6/10
The cover is fine, that’s about it really. It’s not a new look at a techno thriller, but it does convey a certain concept that’s accurate to the theme of the movie. I wouldn’t have it as a poster, but it’s just because it’s a little bit boring to me. The menu is live action from the movie, but nothing that tells the whole story.
Audio & Video: 9/10 (By Ascully)
Source Code employs a great looking 1080P transfer that fills the whole of your widescreen display (1.78:1). This gives the movie a vibrant look that will not disappoint. This is literally a flawless transfer with no evidence of ringing, DNR, or edge enhancement. If I had to complain about anything it’s the lack of color in the image but that is a stylistic choice by the director and not a complaint you could nail down to the disc.
For an action movie Source Code is very “talky”. The dialog, as usual, comes through clear and centered on this DTS-HD Master Audio encode. Surround sound kicks in during scenes on the train with announcer voices coming through the rear speakers. There is also liberal use of bass when the train does happen to hit something.
Overall Duncan Jones has an awesome second movie here and one that demands to be watched. If you are looking for edge of the seat action with an intelligent edge Source Code is for you.
You can find the Blu-Ray for around $18 online, so that’s not bad. If you watch it with the extras and then with the commentary you are getting lots of value for your money. I would say that for me it’s not a movie I need to purchase. A rental or online streaming is fine for me. It’s good entertainment and I recommend it, however, it doesn’t need to live on my shelf forever.
Overall Score 8/10