THE ADJUSTMENT BUREAU (15)
D: George Nolfi
Universal/Media Rights Capital (George Nolfi, Chris Moore,
Michael Hackett, Bill Carraro, Isa Dick Hackett & Joel Viertel)
USA 🇺🇸 2011
W: George Nolfi [based on the story "Adjustment Team" by
Philip K. Dick]
DP: John Toll
Ed: Jay Rabinowitz
Mus: Thomas Newman
Matt Damon (David Norris), Emily Blunt (Elise Sellas), Anthony
Mackie (Harry Mitchell), John Slattery (Richardson), Michael Kelly (Charlie Traynor), Terence Stamp (Thompson)
Personally, I think the writing of Philip K. Dick is
conceptually excellent. He's the mind behind the inspiration of several movies, including Total Recall, Blade Runner & Minority Report, science fiction with an intellectual twist,
lifting it above the mundanity of laser guns and spaceships alone.
From the advertising of this movie, I'd be forgiven to
expect a political thriller dipped in sci-fi gloss. Unfortunately, the advertising flat out LIED TO ME!
I've not read the short story upon which this was
based, so can only review the movie on it's own basis. It centres around a New York senator who, by chance, meets a beautiful woman who he develops feelings for, but 'the adjustment
bureau' (a loose allegory for God/faith/destiny/whatever) cannot allow their relationship to blossom for the good of mankind and use increasingly desperate measures to intervene whenever
their paths cross, but the human spirit always finds a way to overcome such endeavours. Ugh! Total dross!
Firstly, I couldn't care less about American politics,
so automatically I can't connect with Matt Damon's characters as easily as though he were playing the average Joe Bloggs.
Secondly, the movie contradicts itself on a suicidally
stupid level. Basing it's logic that two people are destined to be together (or not) the movie then cops out with a mixed message which doesn't have any real resolution at
The third factor is that, upon his initial meeting
with Emily Blunt's character, she's undoubtedly beautiful, but also very much a bit of a promiscuous nutcase. Their meeting place is, after all, a men's room which she happens to burst
into, simply for shit and giggles. Nevertheless, this doesn't stop Damon's character pining over her for years despite not determining whether she has the slightest touch of class to go
with her ditziness. Sure, she's a good looking girl, but it's not like Damon's lumbered with the facial features of Quasimodo to prevent him from meeting, well ANYONE with similar
interests or personality traits in the period over the movie is set, which just happens to be several years (This point kind of ties in with my second).
Easily the most annoying thing about this film is that
it advertises itself as "Bourne meets Inception". Promotional lies irritate more than all the potential that the idea lacked.