Lucy [2014]

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Directed by Luc Besson

I’m glad I caught this on the big screen. Fuck me sideways it looked good, which was what I was counting on initially, as I thought I’d need to (attempt) to stop my brain from over-thinking every. single. fucking. thing. always. But once it got started, I was hooked. Some of the science talked about was good stuff, and the way Lucy developed emotionally in the second half of the film was quite thought-provoking. I thought that aspect could have been explored more.

I did have to really suspend belief a couple of times with the 10% malarkey, though only near the beginning. One can’t help but feel like this could have been amazing with just a few alterations to that concept… But on the other hand, once I got into the flow of the movie it didn’t bother me after the first act. It certainly helped that I’ve watched three superhero movies in the last few days, as I just kinda treated it like that and enjoyed the ride. But given the ride was so incredible visually, I again can’t help but think that if the base concept was even semi-plausible, I’d have loved it even more.

Or maybe not, who knows.

I was disappointed with the action sequences, if you could call them that. I found myself hoping for more in most of the action scenes after Lucy decides to find vengeance. There wasn’t exactly a lack of action, but I was hoping for more creativity in the action, rather than “well she can do anything!”, which took some (most) of the tension away from those particular scenes. That aspect made the (thankfully short) car chase the only part of the movie that I really didn’t like. That, and the cars going over ramps and flipping over like how many other silly action movies? But, that chase did lead to a very satisfying ending, and other than that car chase, this entire movie is just a visual feast all the way through.

Near the start, when flashes of wildlife are chopped into the film to relate to the action as it happens.. Honestly one of the best visual displays (classic film technique-wise) I have ever seen in a recent film, it actually gave me a weird chill a couple of times. Then, once she began to change, every time the viewpoint delved into her body- showing cells and nerves and whatnot I couldn’t help but just gape in amazement. I’m sure my jaw was on the floor. I wanted more! Especially for that final sequence, those visuals gripped me the way the Stargate does in 2001. If only that sequence was just a little longer!

Visually, this is my favourite movie of the year, of any year almost… I can’t think of much to compare it to, it blends both classic film-making techniques with beautiful, looks-so-good-I-could-frame-it CGI scenes perfectly, effortlessly it seemed. THE ZERO THEOREM is the closest thing I can think of, obviously ‘cos it is recent, but that also looked incredible from both an analog and digital viewpoint.

The spectacular visuals rescue this film, as the flimsy plot and especially the underwhelming action scenes were something I thought Luc Besson would have realised in a better, more stylish fashion. This is his best movie for a good while, but that isn’t saying a lot. Compared to The Fifth Element, this feels worlds away.

3/5 – Generous, but those visuals really were unlike anything I have seen before.