Things We Learned from Movie X
By Tom Houseman
July 3, 2009
Remember when action stars actually looked like action stars? Guys like Jean-Claude Van Damme, Bruce Lee, Steven Seagal and Arnold Schwarzenegger. Guys you wouldn't want to meet in a dark alley, guys who could crush a motorcycle with their fists, guys so juiced up on steroids that they make Barry Bonds look like Dakota Fanning. What happened to those guys, and how the heck did they get replaced by Shia LaBeouf? This shrimp weighs about 12 pounds and looks like he would be easily defeated by a strong gust of wind, let alone any serious threat.
And yet Mr. LaBeouf has starred in a string of highly successful action films, in both supporting and lead roles, from Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull to the latest blockbuster bonanza, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. Along the way, he did a little movie called Eagle Eye, about a regular guy thrown into a crazy situation that ends up with him having to save the world or something inane like that. But as ridiculous as both the concept and execution of Eagle Eye are, I did learn some valuable lessons about technology, politics, and how absurdly low expectations can lead you to appreciate a movie from the director and star of Disturbia just by saying, "hey, at least it was better than that piece of garbage Disturbia." I would put a spoiler warning here, but that would assume that anyone wanted to see this awful movie already has, so here goes.
1) Everything in the World is Controlled by One Computer
Did you see I, Robot? Remember the computer that took over the world in that movie? Well Eagle Eye takes the exact same premise, relocates it from the future to the present, and makes it even more ridiculous. I didn't think that last part was even possible. Yes, according to the makers of Eagle Eye, there is one computer that can run everything in the world! Runaway tractor? Computer took over its controls and sent it on a crazed tractoring spree. Milk went bad before its expiration date? Computer hacked into it and sped up its aging process. And do you really think Halle Barry would have agreed to make Catwoman had the computer that controls everything not taken over her brain? Well, maybe. But the point is, there is one computer that runs the entire world, and we really shouldn't piss it off. Why? Because...
2) That computer is gonna PMS at any second
I don't know about you, but I find it extremely irritating when people make PMS jokes about public figures. Uh-oh, we better not elect Hillary Clinton president, cause she might launch a barrage of nuclear missiles because of PMS. What if Sonia Sotomayor has an important decision to make just before her period? The fate of the free world can be destroyed because of disgruntled women! It's supremely annoying, but apparently what the folks behind Eagle Eye think, because the whole movie is about a computer voiced by a woman (Why, Julianne Moore? Why?) who throws a hissy fit because the president disagrees with her. In the most serious case of that-time-of-the-monthitis, she tries to kill the president and everyone else who gets in her way. Women... am I right, fellas?