Labor Day Weekend Movie Review: Elysium

Going to the movies this Labor Day weekend? With many summer blockbuster movies to see out there it’s hard to pick just one to spend your hard earned money. One of La Jolla Blue Book’s recommended movies to see this weekend is Elysium, here is my review.

Elysium is the new summer blockbuster sci-fi movie written and directed by Neill Blomkamp (District 9). Starring Matt Damon as the hero protagonist, Jodie Foster as Delacourt Elysium’s self-righteous Secretary of Defense, and main bad-ass villain Sharlto Copley as Kruger.

The movie is set in the futuristic year of 2154, between two polarizing worlds where a hero (Matt Damon) must make sacrifices to bring equality to human kind. The very wealthy live peaceful healthy lives in a space station called Elysium while the less fortunate reside on a decaying and overpopulated earth. Earth has become a surveillance state under the supervision of robots and its citizens are in desperate need of healthcare (Obamacare anyone?). By contrast in Elysium every legal citizen has access to healthcare and can be cured of all illnesses through the use of their exclusive technology in a matter of minutes. This plays a major role in the plot and the trajectory of our hero Matt Damon.

The characters lacked depth and we only see a glimpse of our heroes life through flashbacks of his young self and some sense of humor in the beginning but it’s non-existent as the movie moves on. We see some peripheral characters that seem to just be there to move the plot forward including Jodie Foster who will risk everything to keep the poor people or “illegals” from entering into Elysium. The most memorable character to me was Kruger (Sharlto Copley). A sociopath militant soldier who is true to himself, as bad as he may be, throughout the film. He embodies the dark side of human nature — sadistic, resentful, and the need to dominate at all costs.

Although the movie falls short of a true summer blockbuster, it’s worth seeing on the big screen. If you liked the visuals of District 9 this movie delivers. From the space station to the robots and cool firearms, Weta Workshop (special effects company who created the world of Lord of the Rings) delivers.

Watch for our next movie review, The Hunger Games: Catching Fire in late November.

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