Next Review

Next is a science fiction action film that was released in 2007 and stars the great Nicholas Cage. I recently saw it and felt like I had to share my thoughts on this masterpiece of an abomination. I am not going to sugarcoat it: This film sucks. From the writing to the special effects, almost everything about this film is awful. The premise alone is absolutely ridiculous: A man can see 2 minutes into the future. However, even with all of its flaws this is a film that is thoroughly entertaining.
Here is the thing about the future. Every time you look at, it changes…
The weakest part of this film is most certainly the writing. Good writing is something that I look for in every single film and it is inexcusable if it is not present. From the formation of the plot to the dialogue of the characters, the writing is all around awful. Sure, it is endlessly entertaining hearing people say awful dialogue but like I said: bad dialogue is inexcusable. I cannot think of one film that I consider to be “good” that does not have good dialogue. As far as the writing in regards to how the plot is formed, it is frustratingly bad. Nicholas Cage’s character (Cris) has the power to see two minutes into the future. How did he acquire this power? Do not worry about it, the film certainly does not.

Yup, Nicholas Cage is at a dinner drinking a martini. Because why not?

Yup, Nicholas Cage is at a dinner drinking a martini. Because why not?

Two minutes seems rather silly, but fine, if it is two minutes then keep it two minutes. However, the film constantly changes its mind about how his powers work. Sometimes he can see two minutes into the future, sometimes he can seem days into the future. Sometimes he can see one scenario, sometimes he can see multiple scenarios unravel at once. Cris’s powers change whenever it was most convenient for the writers to progress the plot. If you ask me, the premise of this film is pretty cool. Cris is kind of like a Pre-Cog from Minority Report, but the film never does anything to push the concept further. There are pieces of dialogue that explain how Cris has led a hard life, but the film should just show us rather than tell us. It would be more engaging than what the film ended up being. Cris is recruited by Julianne Moore’s character in the film, but it is never explained how she found out about him. I would be interested to know how someone figures out his ability, but the film just skips right to her trying to recruit him.
…because you looked at it, and that changes everything else.
I hope that I have done a good enough job to explain why the writing is bad, but I might as well continue explaining why everything else is bad. The editing is particularly poor because of one scene. There is a scene where Jessica Biel’s character (Liz) is interacting with these kids. One of the kids mentions how Cris (Cage) looks at Liz (Biel) the same way her sister’s boyfriend looks at her. The film then decides to cut to the creepiest look on Cris’s face. The CGI in the film is also really bad, but it fit well with the rest of the awfulness in the film. The camerawork in uninspired and the acting is all around atrocious.

Poor Julianne Moore. Can't escape this film.

Poor Julianne Moore. Can’t escape this film.

Academy Award Winner Julianne Moore is in this film and gives probably the worst performance of her career. The saving grace is actually Nicholas Cage. He is hilarious. Even when he is trying to act seriously, I cannot help but chuckle when I see him on screen. So if the film is really this bad, then why did I watch it? I get a kick out of really bad films. This film is so bad and outlandish that it is actually quite funny. I found myself being thoroughly entertained from start to finish, so at the very least I do not feel like I wasted an hour and a half.
Closing Remarks
Make no mistake, this is a bad film. I would consider it a “good” bad film, but that is just me. If you like films like The Room, then I think you will enjoy this one. The biggest tragedy for me is that there could have been a solid film, and instead we got an embarrassingly poor piece of cinema.


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