Minority Report

The fact that you stopped it from falling doesn't mean it wasn't going to fall.

A review by Mike Shea   Movie Rating: ( * * · · · )    DVD Rating: ( * * * * · )

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I was looking forward to this movie. Spielberg has disappointed with a lot of movies, but AI wasn't too terrible and Minority Report looked like it could be an interesting ride. Unfortunately it wasn't that interesting after all. Perhaps it was the hype, perhaps it was something I ate the night before, but Minority Report is not that good a movie.

Minority Report is able to build a decent future world, complete with ads on every smooth surface anyone might look at. The movie seems to make a point of throwing new technology in our faces, seeming to get "oooooh, ahhhh" responses out of the audience. There is little subtlety in the use of technology, or if there is, it is so overshadowed by the blatant stuff that we miss it. Cops on jet packs, auto-piloting cars, "sick-sticks" (yep, they follow the puke rule), retnal scanning everyone all the time, all of this was supposed to add flavor but ended up making the whole world look like a dentist's office. A severe overexposure of the film, making everything bright white, didn't help at all, stealing a lot of expensive detail from the picture. Spielberg seemed to be going for the opposite of Film-Noir, the opposite end of sci-fi from Blade Runner.

The story is interesting but nothing earth shattering. The use of three "precogs" ("It's better not to think of them as human") who are able to detect murders before they occur could have made a more interesting story than the future murderer one. Interview with a Vampire for instance, he far outshines his work here.

The DVD of Minority Report is an excellent quality disc, though the movie did everything to make it bad. The over-exposed picture means it is impossible to see any real detail in anything. The sound is fine but John William's classical score seemed far out of place in this William Shatner's Tech-Wars-like detective movie. There is both a Dolby Digital and DTS soundtrack and a 16x9 enhanced 2.40 to 1 picture. A second disc includes a large making-of feature on how Spielberg went about making the over-emphasized world we are forced to endure. There is no commentary track.

Minority Report was a disappointment. After the excellent story and well-done science fiction film, AI, I expected more from Spielberg. Minority Report had little of interest in its futuristic world, a pretty flat storyline, and a horribly butchered picture. It isn't a total loss, but close. Worth a rental but not a keeper by any means.