Vanilla Sky - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Vanilla Sky Reviews

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Super Reviewer
October 3, 2010
Being a massive fan of Cameron Crowe's work, "Vanilla Sky" has always been one of his pieces that I have never had the urge to watch. After mustering up the time to view it, I can truthfully say that even though I liked it, I really do not have a clue if it is a good or bad film. Tom Cruise plays David, a self-obsessed man who falls in love a few times, before getting into a car accident, but really not. The film begins to branch off of that ideal about forty-five minutes in, and actually becomes confused within itself, demanding your full attention in order to fully comprehend where it decides to go in the conclusion. It is one of those films where you either you believe in it or you will hate it. For me, I do not believe in what happened in the end, but I appreciate the thought that went into it. Overall, this complex "love story" had me from the beginning, but then began to drag me around until the ending explained it all. It is a very odd story to put on film to begin with, so I think Crowe did the best he could with it. It is a very well-made, yet flawed picture that I believe is good. "Vanilla Sky" is enjoyable fluff.
Super Reviewer
December 12, 2007
Good movie. Saw it years ago, couldn't remember the plot, so second watch was still a surprise. Won't post any spoilers, but it does make sense at the end, which is a plus in this type of movie.
I have to say, I am really not a Tom Cruise fan at all, but he does a good job here. As do Cameron Diaz and Penelope Cruz.
My favourite scene is the one early on when he goes down the deserted street in New York City. Very effective and actually I like the way the whole film was shot.
It is a long movie which doesn't feel long or wear out it's welcome.
I must add I have not seen the original movie, so my review only speaks for this remake.
Super Reviewer
½ July 23, 2007
A bad, bad misfire concerning a narcissistic playboy (Tom Cruise) who has trouble differentiating reality from dreams, as well as how he became horribly disfigured. What could have been a "screw with your mind" thriller in the Kubrick vein is instead a bad melodrama featuring Tom Cruise walking around in love with himself, only the audience could not care less about his miserable, soul-less character. If his character was someone we could pull for, or atleast sympathize with, it would have made this movie potentially worthwhile. Instead it is a plodding, 140 minute slugfest of pop culture and a poorly chosen soundtrack that elects for breezy and light instead of the more appropriate darkness and bleakness. I really like Cameron Crowe (especially his taste in music, except for how he did in in this film), but this is a bad movie that aims to be bigger than it should be, where coherence, as well as a likable character to root for, are not given any light of day for whatever reason.
Super Reviewer
June 9, 2006
This is a remake of a (probably, supposedly) superior Spanish film I've yet to seen. A lot of people have mixed feelings on this film, and while yes, it is uneven, I am mostly on the positive side of things.

This is the story of a womanizing playboy who gets disfigured and is forced to re-evaluate his life. In the process, there's the hope for redemption, but at the same time, he begins to realize that life and reality might not be actually what it seems, leading to him making some tough choices and realizations.

The cast is likable and notable, and they give some decent performances, especially Diaz and Cruz (reprising her role from the original film). The cinematography is really good, there's a nicely surreal and haunting atmosphere, and being a Crowe film, there's a great soundtrack to boot.

I think Cameron Crowe should really be praised for this. It was a bold step in a new direction for him, trying his hand at something he'd never done before, and, while the film is kinda messy, it's definitely a noble effort. It's odd, thought provoking, and confusing, but has some wonderful ideas, and is worth seeing at least once.
Super Reviewer
February 6, 2012
Vanilla Sky is a very interesting and somewhat bizarre film. I saw this when it first came out and thought it was a good film with some good performances. Tom Cruise is good here, and the rest of the cast are good as well. Cameron Crowe who directed Almost Famous and Elizabethtown directs this film, and though this isn't a perfect film, it definitely isn't a bad one. Cameron Crowe is an underrated director and Vanilla Sky is another good effort from him. Though not his best, Vanilla Sky is a very good film that is engaging, and like I said, pretty bizarre. If you enjoy Cameron Crowe, you'll most likely enjoy this. Vanilla Sky is different, but it's still has enough good things about it to make it a viewable film. I thought that Tom Cruise was pretty good in his role and most of the cast were good as well. Vanilla Sky is underrated, and though it's not a perfect film, it still has lots of interesting bits for the viewer to enjoy. I very much enjoyed this film, and thought that the bizarre story was good, and that Cameron Crowe delivered yet another good flick. I think Cameron Crowe is a very underrated director. Vanilla Sky is not the directors strongest effort, but for the most part, it's a film worth watching. The cast makes this a worthwhile film to watch, and though it's not a great film; this is a unique viewing experience.
Super Reviewer
½ June 23, 2011
Interesting film, but fully unnecessary remake.
Super Reviewer
January 26, 2011
Bizarre. Intriguing. Confusing. Intense. Vanilla sky could be described as any of these and for me was a huge succes.

Well filmed and good direction we are treated with a standout performance by Tom Cruise as he plays David Aames, a playboy executive type who's world begins to merge dream and reality. We've all had a dream that felt so real it was hard to tell the difference until you woke up, well Vanilla Sky explores that and tips it on its head.

The scenes with Kurt Russell interrogating a locked up Aames are intense as we witness the flashbacks that lead up to someone dying, perhaps a murder.

Trippy, good fun and possibly Tom Cruise's best film of the last 10 years.

"Even in the future, the sweet is never as sweet without the sour. "
Super Reviewer
May 2, 2007
The young head of a multi-million dollar publishing empire is almost killed by a suicidal stalker and during the process of putting his life back together, it seems to become a strange blurring of fact and fiction. The dreams vs reality format draws inevitable comparisons with the likes of Total Recall and Inception and the moment the breezy romance gives way to the alternate scenario of a masked Cruise awaiting trial for murder the story becomes very intriguing. He actually gives a decent lead performance (although it is, as ever, impossible not to think of wacky pseudo religions and dwarfism every time you look at him), Jason Lee does his usual quirky best friend schtick and Penelope Cruz is cute as the romantic interest. But really it is Kurt Russell who makes the movie and all of the scenes that feature him are easily the best in the film. As is always the case with this kind of hokey Twilight Zone inspired story, the explanation for it all is far less interesting than the journey and the fact that Cruise's character is pretty much just a charming but vain, selfish asshole who learns no moral lesson makes the ending a little unsatisfactory. As with all Crowe's films, it does seem a case of style over substance but it's very entertaining while it lasts and made me want to look up Abre Los Ojos, the Spanish film it was based upon.
Super Reviewer
½ September 8, 2010
Other reviewers state that this is a movie that should be viewed several times, and that it is either a love it or hate it kind of movie. I think those are accurate, but I fall into the hate camp, so I never watched it again. Truthfully, I didn't really get it the first time, and was pretty bored by the end.
Super Reviewer
June 15, 2010
Recently the BBC in UK held a poll for worst film ever, and while Titanic *won*, this came 4th. I just don't understand how anyone can dislike this movie...

Vanilla Sky is a dark psychological drama about dreams, reality and 'what might have been'.

Tom Cruise is Dave, a yuppie who has it all. He has a 51% stake in his father's company, therefore the majority shareholder, and constantly finds himself in a battle to main his control over the '7 dwarves' who make up the rest of the board. His personal life is a mess, with a shallow relationship with Julie (Cameron Diaz) the closest he gets to love, while his best friend Brian (Jason Lee) who adores Julie sticks by him regardless.

However, on holding a birthday party he's introduced to Sofia (The perfect Penelope Cruz) and falls instantly for her.

This is all very well but the plot is parallel to a side story of Dave wearing a white mask in a cell with Dr McCabe (Kurt Russell) who's accusing him of murder and wants to understand why it happened.

Dave begins on a journey to make sense of his life.

I admit there is a 'Hollywoody' feel to this film, and given it's a remake of a Mexican/Spanish original also featuring Penelope Cruz it's probably disappointing to purists. But only viewing this on its own terms I absolutely love this movie. It keeps you guessing, and the ending is very conclusive.

It may not be to everyone's taste, but I loved it.
The Gandiman
Super Reviewer
February 6, 2010
Good story done bad
Super Reviewer
December 19, 2009
Vanilla Sky was big Joy to watch. I like the bit like that completely empty Times Square Scene.

The shooting of the scene where there is a completely-empty Times Square in New York was filmed in Times Square on November 12, 2000, in the hours before 10 a.m.. A large section of blocks around Times Square was closed off while this scene was shot.
Super Reviewer
½ September 15, 2009
An unforgivable inuslt
Super Reviewer
November 19, 2009
A truly bizarre movie that is actually Cameron Crowe's finest film making. It has a great visual style and definite tone. Tom Cruise was flawless and different than I've ever seen him before. The plot is really well conceived and quite nightmarish.
Super Reviewer
September 14, 2009
I liked this movie a lot, rather unique and interesting throughout.
Super Reviewer
May 30, 2006
Brian: We almost died, man... And do you know what I saw?
David: What?
Brian: Your all life flashing in front of me...
David: And how was it?
Brian: Almost worth dying for...

Tom Cruise is given the chance to play a rich, handsome, playboy with women problems. Not too far of a stretch. Anyway, he and Cameron Crowe reunite to make a different kind of movie. Instead of a light romantic comedy, we get a trippy, rollercoaster ride of a movie, full of interesting ways to interpret it.

Describing this movie is a challenge, so I wont go into too much detail, but it involves Cruise playing David Ames, a rich boy, working as the owner in his father's former company. He meets a new girl, spends a wonderful night with her, and then a tragic event changes his life. He becomes a different person, where even his mind begins to mess with him. Its a strange sort of romance drama, with a reality warp-type twist.

Sofía: I'll tell you in another life, when we are both cats.

There is also a very good supporting cast that includes Penelope Cruz who has very good chemistry with Cruise and played the same role in the original version of this film, Cameron Diaz as more than a ditzy blonde, which is nice. Then we also have Kurt Russel, who just can't dial down his coolness in whatever he's in and Jason Lee in complete, hilarious sidekick mode.

Dr. Curtis McCabe: My favorite Beatle was once John. Now it's... Paul.

The soundtrack, like in all Crowe movies is great. It's one of my favorites, especially the song written by Paul McCartney for this movie, "Vanilla Sky."

If Crowe had more experience in crafting this type of movie, it could have been even better, but it's still good. It works for me because of how different it is to see Cruise almost playing himself in a way, thrown into a wild mess of a life. It's also certainly better on repeated viewings, due to various interpretations and being able to pick up on more little moments.

Edmund: There are no guarantees, but remember: Even in the future, the sweet is never as sweet without the sour.
Super Reviewer
July 13, 2008
Although often a shot-by-shot replica of the Spanish original, Abre los Ojos, this film actually develops its characters. You see more of David's loaded, freewheeling lifestyle before Sofia comes into his life so his transformation has a more believable arc. And Sofia actually has a PERSONALITY. She's funny and quirky and loveable, not just the beautiful goddess put on a pedestal as in the original. The juxtaposition of lighthearted music to utter mania, creates a three-dimensional tone that is more romantic and ironic, not just "scary" or "devastating."
Super Reviewer
½ August 5, 2007
I really loved it.
I will always admire Tom Cruise. I don't care who he is or if he got only one fuckin' testicle. He acts well.
Super Reviewer
½ February 21, 2008
Pretty good and INTENSE movie!!!!!!!
Super Reviewer
½ August 23, 2007
A surprisingly intelligent and exciting movie altogether. It's a romance/thriller with a bit of science fiction thrown in. Suberb acting from Cruise and Cruz. It has a very enjoyable (maybe annoying for some) ending that will make you want to enjoy it a first time then watch it again to get the full impact. Gotta be one of film's most surprising and entertaining endings.
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