First, I will get the good stuff out of the way. For action, surround effects, it is almost a perfect 10. Maybe a few micro-points off the best just because of all the noise, but if you want a bass worked And surrounds enveloping you, you have to try this movie. It comes in glorious DTS-MA 7.1, and it lets you know that all your speakers are working fine. Someone hired a sound engineer to rival the best. You have to give this movie a spin.
If only the did the same for the plot…
On the surface, the screen writer seems to have taken snippets from Ghost in a Shell, Matrix, Rollerball, Running Man, Gladiator, Death Race, Condemned, and even borrowed the same actor to do similar lines from Assault on Precinct 13 (John Leguizamo) to re-enact his role, and borrowed bits from Surrogates to put together a plot that is so kaleidoscopic, and fast moving, those who are pre-disposed to epileptic fits should be warned. Heck Gerad Butler even looks like Russel Crowe in Gladiator right down to his habit of grabbing sand from the ground…It is also filmed in a very MTV / video game way, and there is so must flesh and boobs on display, you will have a long mammary (sic memory) of the show… this is not something you wish to nominate for the Oscars…
Yet if I read the director or screen writer correctly, there is some message, and mind control and domination of the masses comes through as the central theme. Yet, as the movie does not dwell on the sentimental long enough, these are pushed aside in the interests of the action, which comes faster and more furious as the movie unfolds.
You will either get disgusted by the plot, or admire it in a Clockwork Orange kind of way. 2.5/5 for the plot.
As for the chick factor, the amount of flesh on display, will knock the socks off that in the entire Matrix series, and clearly the director is into the “shock and awe” kind of tactics. 3/5
So it boils down to this, will you like the action enough to keep it, or will the lack of a solid storyline force you to return the disc.
By the way, Lionsgate is the tour-de-force when it comes to their Blu Ray releases, and you can never accuse them of messing up the sound. But somehow some of the poorest plot action movies of recent times, have had such superb sound engineerings, that it almost begs someone to re-edit or re-write the story. Think of Condemned, Marine, 12 rounds amongst many such movies with a stinker of a plot and some of the best bass and surround effects ever. You can never accuse them of a dull moment.
A footnote: avoid the UK copy. It has DTS-MA 5.1.
I have no financial interest or other interests in any of the items / events I write about.