Reviewed by: Raphael Vera
Discuss the movie’s comment that there is no courage without fear
What do you think of the movie’s symbolism of the futility of war—in sacrificing so many soldiers?
What does the Bible say about intelligent life on other planets? Answer
Are we alone in the universe? Answer
Does Scripture refer to life in space? Answer
questions and answers about the origin of life
about the novel All You Need is Kill by Hiroshi Sakurazaka
|Featuring:||Tom Cruise … Cage
Emily Blunt … Rita
Bill Paxton … Master Sergeant Farell
Lara Pulver … Karen Lord
Jeremy Piven … Col. Walter Marx (uncredited)
Brendan Gleeson … General Brigham
Noah Taylor … Dr. Carter
Charlotte Riley … Nance
Jonas Armstrong … Skinner
|Director:||Doug Liman—“The Bourne Identity” 1-3, “Mr. and Mrs. Smith,” “Jumper”|
Village Roadshow Pictures
3 Arts Entertainment
|Distributor:||Warner Bros. Pictures|
“Live. Die. Repeat.”
Major William Cage (Tom Cruise) is the wry face of the American military’s media relations front helping to recruit new soldiers in the war against the ultimate enemy; a shape shifting alien race that has already taken Europe and, if our forces don’t stop them soon, the rest of the world.
Emboldened by their first victory against the aliens using a newly developed exoskeleton (mechanized body armor), a retaliatory strike launching from London is planned. By no real measure a soldier, Cage, in one of Tom Cruise’s most interesting roles in years, manages to infuriate the general planning the counter offensive and ends up being forced to fight alongside the troops on invasion day. During the landing he meets the famous but stoic hero of the Battle of Verdun, Sergeant Rita Vrataski (Emily Blunt) shortly before he watches her die. It will not be the last time he sees her die.
Cage gets killed within minutes of the landing, yet for reasons he does not understand he awakens back on the very day before the invasion when he first confronts the gruff Master Sergeant Farell, masterfully played with spit fire enthusiasm by Bill Paxton, and gets assigned to his doomed squad. Forced to go back to that moment every time he gets killed he manages to survive a little longer each time with a natural pre-cognizance of danger that eventually catches the knowing eye of Rita who reveals she knows exactly what is happening to him and that by working together they can use his ‘ability’ to try and save the world if only he can live, die, and repeat enough.
“Edge of Tomorrow” is a clever futuristic sci-fi action film that borrows from various time-loop stories previously done (“Groundhog Day,” “Source Code,” “Men in Black 3,” etc.), including the somewhat sick humor found in having to ‘die’ in order to ‘reset,’ and for the majority of the film finds itself unfolding much like a video game. Debatable are the merits and shortcomings of this, including some unresolved plot complications, but there are some areas of concern that need to be addressed first.
Violence: Heavy. The film begins by showing the meteorites hitting Earth and the aftermath of this is shown in the utter devastation of many cities. This is a war movie so, while mostly bloodless to avoid an “R” rating, soldiers are killed in any number of ways including; being crushed, impaled by aliens, shot, blown up, set on fire, drowning and several blow themselves up just as they are being overrun by aliens in order to give their comrades a chance. The threat of destruction is rampant throughout these scenes and will frighten younger children so please don’t consider bringing them for this reason alone.
There are also the numerous ways in which Cage dies, many of which are the result of Rita shooting him in order to reset the day while looking for a better outcome even after he only injures himself, some more serious than others (broken leg, back etc.) and one time he is covered with alien blood as it presumably melts him. Cage is also run over by a truck, however, similar to when he is shot this is all done just offscreen as is the time that he is stabbed in the leg. Dead bodies are rampant, but are only sometimes shown close up and mostly that of Sergeant Rita.
Language: Moderate. Cursing, just short of “R” level include; Sh** (6x’s), B*** or SOB (4x’s), As* or A**h*** (6x’s) and the name of God or Jesus is taken in vain three times. Other crudeness came sporadically in the form of “balls”, “hell”, “bollocks” and “bit**” was seen on a sign featuring Rita (“Full Metal B***) whenever Cage appears back at the base. Sexual innuendo is heard when one of the men in Cage’s squad talks about wishing to be with two women and during one of Cage’s later iterations he asks Rita, somewhat relevantly, about sex.
Sex/Nudity: Minor. One of the grunts in Cage’s squad likes to go ‘Au Natural’ within his exoskeleton but this is mostly implied and nothing overt is seen. Before the invasion Cage always finds Rita exercising in her mid-drift baring yoga outfit as she prepares for battle in the training room.
The sci-fi fantasy aspect of the film dealing with being able to die and yet come back again and again until you get it right is a fantasy that has been around for a while outside of science fiction (i.e., reincarnation and some religions) so I was more than a little amused when, upon one of Cage’s first returns he asks the Sergeant, “What day is it?” and Farell jokingly says, “It’s judgment day.” This comes remarkably close to the truth that the Word of God tells us doesn’t it?
At least twice in the film soldiers are seen willingly give up their lives for their brothers in arms, and this was a welcome reminder on this year’s D-Day anniversary not only of our own brave men in the armed forces that often make this sacrifice but also how our Lord Jesus holds this standard up for us, even as he did for the whole world.
“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” —John 15:13
A pivotal turning point for the character of William Cage came after one of Rita’s deaths. His focus, resolve and selflessness truly came into being at that point. A similar change came over the main character in the original time-looping film “Groundhog Day” which was, not so coincidentally, also precipitated by a death. Amazing how true are the words of Solomon when he spoke of the surprising value of funerals in forcing us to face up to our mortality and the meaning of our lives from an eternal perspective.
“Edge of Tomorrow” brings a fan favorite concept to life within an action filled, futuristic D-Day scenario. While I did enjoy the film, I also recognize the repeating format is not for everyone and much of the screen time, necessarily dedicated to this, left the narrative, despite the drama and frenetic action, lacking in some points, including the end. Visually stunning, but jarringly violent, this is a film that is sure to please age appropriate fans of the genre and others just happy to go along for the ride.
Violence: Heavy to extreme / Profanity: Heavy / Sex/Nudity: Moderate
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.