Prayer Focus
Movie Review


MPAA Rating: PG-13 for intense action, some violence, brief strong language and innuendo

Reviewed by: Brett Willis

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Moviemaking Quality:

Primary Audience:
Teens Adults
Action Adventure Thriller
2 hr. 1 min.
Year of Release:
USA Release:
July 29, 2005 (wide)
Featuring: Josh Lucas, Jessica Biel, Jamie Foxx, Joe Morton, Richard Roxburgh
Director: Rob Cohen
Producer: Mike Medavoy, Laura Ziskin, Neal H Moritz
Distributor: Columbia Pictures
Copyright, Columbia Pictures
Copyright, Columbia Pictures
Copyright, Columbia Pictures
Copyright, Columbia Pictures
Copyright, Columbia Pictures
Copyright, Columbia Pictures
Copyright, Columbia Pictures
Relevant Issues
Copyright, Columbia Pictures

How does viewing violence in movies affect the family? Answer

What are the consequences of sexual immorality? Answer

Fear the sky.

This newest offering from Rob Cohen is basically mindless adrenaline-food. It combines the hotshot-Navy-fighter-pilot theme from “Top Gun” with the Artificial-Intelligence-gone-awry theme found in several Sci-Fi films.

In the near future, the firepower and Stealth technology of the Navy’s Talon fighter-bomber are used against terrorists anywhere and everywhere in the world. There are only three pilots in the Talon program: Ben Gannon (Josh Lucas), Kara Wade (Jessica Biel) and Henry Purcell (Jamie Foxx). But after a grabber-opener attack sequence (which turns out to be just a training exercise), the program’s commander, Capt. George Cummings (Sam Shepard), tells the team that they’re getting a fourth member. What’s up with that, the pilots wonder aloud. There aren’t any other Talon aircraft in the world.

Well, another Stealth aircraft soon lands in their midst, and it’s similar to, but distinct from, the Talon. It can do vertical takeoff and landing. But most notably, it has no pilot. It’s a UCAV (Unmanned Aerial Combat Vehicle) run by an intelligent “learning computer” Oh, sure, nothing will go wrong. Can anyone say “Colossus” or “The Terminator”? The UCAV is also referred to as an EDI (Extreme Deep Invader), which supplies its nickname of “Eddie.”

In a live attack mission, Ben disobeys a direct order and uses a dangerous fast-diving technique to insert an implosion bomb into a building. Eddie observes and learns from the disobedience. Then, when Eddie is hit by lightning, his neural circuits declare their independence from all human control. Eddie attempts to carry out rogue missions, including some that are just wargames in a computer. So, the Talon pilots may be forced to shoot down their robotic “wingman.” And Capt. Cummings would like to get Eddie back, but not be saddled with any human witnesses of what went wrong.

The action sequences (much of which are Computer Generated Animation) come fast and thick, while character development of the human pilots is minimal. We know that they’re all committed to each other as comrades, that the two men use their Navy dress uniforms to pick up women, that Ben and Kara have an unstated romance going, and that’s about the extent of it. Since the heroes aren’t fully developed, the normal plotline of the heroes overcoming obstacles and reaching a goal isn’t standard formula either. The idea is there, but it’s approached in an unusual way.

Violence: There’s a wealth of explosions, a lot of combat and many deaths. Most of those killed are innocents. Those who were in the line of fire. Those in the way of a nuclear cloud. Those who are (properly) defending themselves against the U.S.’ pilots attacking them without good reason, or are hunting for a downed U.S. pilot who secretly parachuted into their country. Even in the final rescue sequence, the “hero” kills a lot of people who were just doing their job.

Profanity: There’s one use of f* and a couple of uses of each of the other common profanities. Offensive and annoying, but pretty light for a military film.

Sex and Nudity: This isn’t the emphasis of this film. We do, however, (1) see Ben and Henry pick up women in a bar, and Henry ogle a woman’s cleavage; (2) see Ben and Kara in swimsuits (Kara’s suit is very brief, and she gives Ben “the finger” with both hands as he snaps her picture); (3) hear all three pilots talk and joke about sexual matters such as correct etiquette after spending a one-nighter with someone.

Conclusion: The acting is good, and the production values are high. But there’s no substance to the characters, and there’s also something else missing from the story although I can’t put my finger on exactly what it is. And since even the good guys have serious flaws, there’s little or nothing in the way of redemptive value here. “Stealth” isn’t as offensive as a lot of films, but it just isn’t a good movie.

See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.

Viewer Comments
Negative—From the opening sequence to the end of this film, all I have to say is a couple of very mild words. “IT SUCKS!” Walking into this movie you somewhat expect a “Top Gun” for today’s era, but you get neither. Instead, you get a movie that are you almost sleeping through until half way into it. and then you get a movie that just is so over the top that you just want to laugh…

With any military movie, you at least expect a decent score or soundtrack but here we have a K-Mart special played on what appears to be a synthesizer to the likings of some lame heavy metal music. Much like a really bad late night movie. The opening scene takes place on a boat much like Top Gun, except with this movie, the Dialogue is so bad you just want to vomit, if not laugh as we did. Then the second scene is in the Bar just like Top Gun, except again with more bad dialogue and then its off to the Aircraft Carrier where it goes even more downhill from there. OK here is a spoiler but you will soon find out. Jamie Foxx gets killed off not even half way through the movie and the tears are so fake you just want to cry for the actors.

I went with a dear friend to this movie and in the first 5 minutes he made a comment. “John, this movie is so miscast, its terrible.” Never has a more true statement fit. How Jamie Foxx, Jessica Beil and Cole Hauser could have read this script and liked it, I will never know but it will be shocking if they can recover from such trash. It is possible that Jamie Foxx realized what a stupid mistake the made by signing onto the movie, that he said KILL ME OFF PLEASE! Who knows.

“Stealth” is about an elite flight squadron of 3 pilots who made it out of 4 hundred and takes place in the near future. However, these plans that look cool can go Mach 4 but not out run a Russian Mig. (Which again was in Top Gun). The movie centers around a Commander who is testing his incredible idea of a pilot less plane with advanced capabilities. The desire starts out to save lives but quickly changes. Eventually the plane “Eddie” gets struck by lightning and goes somewhat haywire and wants to fulfill its mission and take out the enemy, even it it means refusing orders. Now Eddie is kind of a good plane and a bad plane. Kind of like Herbie. He may squirt oil on you but at least he had a good heart when he did it. Eventually after the death of the ultra perv player Jamie Foxx, the two flyers must stop Eddie from starting a war with Russia or whoever else may have it.

The movie as I stated previously is very slow in the beginning, but then finally picks up speed after you have taken a nap in the beginning of the film. Then when it finally gets good, the dialogue and writing just kill any life that it may have. The best part of the movie is where Eddie takes out a bunch of bad North Korean army soldiers.

The movie contains lots of sexual innuendos and violence. Oddly, there is not a lot of cussing in the movie. I give this movie 1 of 4 Stars and that is gracious!
My Ratings: Offensive/1
—John Kehrli, age 31
Neutral—My husband and I were disappointed with some of the sexual references in this film, as well as an obscene gesture, and in one instance the film makes it clear that one of the leading characters, who is later killed, has a one-night stand with a young woman he meets in Thailand (although nothing is shown).

I also thought that the film was rather slow at times, but aside from these few things, I suppose it was an all-right film. The acting was nothing special, and the plot to me was a bit improbable: the stealth plane, which starts out as “evil” in the beginning of a movie and kills thousands of people, eventually develops feelings and becomes “sorry” for its actions toward the end, sacrificing itself for the two heroes. I must say, I was also disappointed at the type of character the leading heroine (Jessica Biel) chose to play in this film.
My Ratings: Average / 2
—Marie, age 24

Comments from young people
Negative—I love Rob Cohen as a director, in the past he’s made successful action movies such as “The Fast and the Furious” and “xXx,” reason is because he isn’t one of those stupid directors than make the usual “save the president, get the girl, make a sequel” type of guys. All movies he’s made were great till now, “Stealth” went down the drain, the plot wasn’t that great, the special effects were pretty good but the acting was terrible. It has no sex/nudity, and there’s a few cuss words and that’s pretty much it. This is probably the worst movie he has made, not mentioning the sequels made for “FatF” and “xXx” (which were made by different directors anyway.) but I doubt anyone would want to pay a good $6.50 to see this, I suggest wait till the dollar theater or something. Anyone who like mindless/careless-explosive-action then this is the movie for you.
My Ratings: Offensive/2
— Ben M., age 15
Positive—Wow. That’s all I could say about Stealth after I had seen it. I immensely enjoyed Stealth. The action was insane, and plenty of stuff blew up to satiate the appetite of a teenager like me. The profanity wasn’t terrible, though there was one F bomb (as far as I can remember). Kara did do a double-handed one finger salute (i.e. flicking someone off, flipping the bird, etc.). As for violence… we saw planes blow up and blood, but not mutilation (this is a PG-13 film, anyway) or other dismemberment. Eddie (the airplane) was also quite a renegade, killing plenty of innocents after his AI went haywire. So yeah, I’m definitely picking this one up on UMD when it comes out.
My Ratings: Average/5
—Clay Waters, age 15
Positive—I watched Stealth with my boyfriend. We both enjoyed the action and the ending. I loved the fact that Hollywood kept the movie clean.
My Ratings: Good/4
—Aleshia Horner, age 17
Positive—This movie was a little offensive with the use of foul language. Otherwise, the movie was fast-paced, inventive and overall excellent. The movie showed what God gave us that robots can never have. E.D.I was an AI bot that led to trouble. It was like a “Top Gun” movie and a James Bond movie that is more real.
My Ratings: Average/5
—Daniel D., age 12
Positive—Although Stealth is not something you would enjoy if you hate movies filled with planes, missiles and explosions, I found it quite entertaining. Don’t expect any quality from this film, however. Only to be entertained. With the exception of some unnecessary sexuality and one profanity, I think it’s an okay movie that should prove to be entertaining if you like these kinds of movies.
My Ratings: Average / 3½
—Daniel, age 15
Neutral—This movie was okay, but a little disappointing. Given, it DID have the necessary blow-up-stuff action for a movie of the sort but in the end wasn’t worth my 1 ½ hour + 5$.
My Ratings: Average / 2½
—Jackson Cuidon, age 11
Negative—If you told some uninspired middle-schooler who watches too much cheap television to come up with a storyline that mixes the poignancy of “I, Robot” and the thrills of “Bourne Identity” the result would be very similar to “Stealth.” Movies must be more than hip music with a cool bass and a nifty drum beat. They must be more than loud explosions and a shaky camera. They must be about more than perverted men and scantily clad women running around with guns. It was all I could do not to laugh when the final “tear jerker” occurred. LOUSY! I recommend you go re-rent one of the Bourne films, or better yet, rent the movie that “Stealth” really imitates—“I, Robot”!
My Ratings: Offensive / 2
—Willow, age 16
Movie Critics
…a sound blast set to a quickly cut action video, interrupted by the dialogue of people not worth listening…
—Ed Blank, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
…“Stealth” should stay hidden—More silliness than suspense…
—Mike Clark, USA Today
…after an early interlude in Thailand where Kara sports a killer bikini…‘Stealth’ briefly turns into a “Making of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue” special… [1 star]
—L.A. Daily News
…Filled with swift action, eye-popping CGI effects, quick one-liners and a likable cast… Check your brain at the door…
—Gerry Shamray, Sun Newspapers of Cleveland