Deja Vu (2006)

If you think it's just a feeling, go back... and look again.

Called in to recover evidence in the aftermath of a horrific explosion on a New Orleans ferry, Federal agent Doug Carlin gets pulled away from the scene and taken to a top-secret government lab that uses a time-shifting surveillance device to help prevent crime.

***Denzel Washington tries to deter a terrorist attack upon looking back in time***
After a terrorist explosion of a ferry in New Orleans, an ATF agent (Denzel Washington) joins an experimental FBI surveillance unit that uses space-folding technology to find the culprit and maybe even avert the disaster. While looking in the past he starts to fall for a notable victim of the tragedy (Paula Patton). Val Kilmer plays the head FBI agent and Jim Caviezel the antagonist. Adam Goldberg is on hand as a tech geek.
While watching "Deja Vu" (2006) I couldn’t help thinking of “Enemy of the State” (1998) because of the kinetic editing and advanced surveillance technology. Turns out they were made by the same director, Tony Scott, Ridley Scott’s brother, who unfortunately jumped off a bridge in Los Angeles in 2012, ending his life at 68 years-old. (Ridley claimed it was due to his secret struggles with cancer while others say it was due to two antidepressants known to cause suicidal thoughts or paranoid ideation).
“Deja Vu” is good, especially the compelling last act. Although it may not be as great as “Enemy of the State,” the filmmaking expertise is off the charts, particularly in regards to the depictions of surveillance technology. It’s mind-boggling to think of the effort that was put into making everything gel and dynamically move along without confusing the viewer. However, it admittedly does get a little convoluted in the second act with the experimental observation equipment, which culminates with a thrilling-but-highly-unbelievable past/present car-chase sequence.
Another problem, a minor one, is the revelation of the terrorist, which brings to mind someone like the infamous Timothy McVeigh. Never mind that 99% of the terrorist attacks the world over are by radical Islamists (e.g. 9/11, Orlando, San Bernardino, Chattanooga, Fort Hood, Boston Marathon, Paris, Nice, etc.). Shh, don’t tell anyone.
The film runs 2 hours, 6 minutes and was shot in New Orleans.
GRADE: B

Scott Free Productions, Touchstone Pictures, Jerry Bruckheimer Films by Tony Scott, Bill Marsilii, Terry Rossio.
Stars: Denzel Washington, Paula Patton, Jim Caviezel, Val Kilmer.

Genres: Action, Crime, Sci-Fi, Thriller

Keywords: deja vu technology fbi new orleans, usa time travel terrorism investigator ferry

11/22/2006

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