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So as you know, I stopped writing lengthy reviews on this site this year, keeping the blog as more of a film diary of sorts.  Lo and behold,...

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Movie Review - Lucy

Lucy (2014)
Starring Scarlett Johansson, Morgan Freeman, Min-Sik Choi, Analeigh Tipton, and Amr Waked
Directed by Luc Besson

My biggest problem with director-screenwriter Luc Besson's Lucy is that I found it difficult to suspend belief and imagine a reality in which there was some feasibility with the title character's superheroic abilities she gains after being given a drug that strengthens her mental capabilities to fully utilize all 100% of her brain's power.  I realize there's a slight whiff of hypocrisy when I can watch something like Jurassic Park and believe that dinosaurs roam the Earth again or a film like Skyfall and buy into the notion that James Bond can run atop a speeding train.  However, something about Lucy didn't ring true and because of that, I found myself removed from the proceedings.

Scarlett Johansson is the title character -- a gal who just happens to be in the wrong place at the wrong time and finds her life completely turned upside down.  In Taiwan, she finds that her boyfriend (or perhaps one-night-stand partner) forces her to deliver a package to an evil drug kingpin (Min-Sik Choi) who in turn implants a package of a newfangled drug in Lucy's stomach forcing her to become a drug mule and carry the supply back to America with her.  However, on her way back home, Lucy is abducted, beaten up quite badly, and, after a powerful kick to her abdomen, finds that the package of drugs is leaking into her body.

As Lucy's story unfolds, we have interspersed scenes of Morgan Freeman as Professor Samuel Norman giving a lecture on how human beings only use 7% of their brain capacity.  Were we to utilize even 20%, we'd see marked differences in how we interact with others.  Thanks to this experimental drug, Lucy is finding out just what a 20% utilization will do and as the drugs seep further into her system, she finds that she is able to do things no human could imagine.

I could deal with Lucy reading lips and becoming quite adept at punching people, but when she starts being able to manipulate matter (both inhuman and human), I admit that I threw in the towel.  Johansson is fine here -- I think she's actually a decent "action" star -- but as Lucy's brain capacity increases, her emotions become nonexistent.  Her character's sassy (and, quite frankly, humorously enjoyable) demeanor at the film's outset becomes a blank slate by the film's end and it just makes for a bland ride.

Lucy is by no means a bad film -- its quick running time of under ninety minutes certainly speeds things along -- but I just couldn't accept the concept perhaps because it was a little too much in human "reality."

The RyMickey Rating:  C

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