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Vantage Point Reviews

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John M

Super Reviewer

March 2, 2008
A completely new concept to me to film the movie shooting the same part from several different characters views till you ran it all together at the end. A good action ride and kept me watching the whole time.
Apeneck F

Super Reviewer

March 3, 2012
An interesting cinematic idea saddled with a typical script yet lightened by a good cast. The President, fighting terrorism, is under threat by some clever radical elements yet protected by a do or die Secret Service man ... wonder how it turns out?
Josh M

Super Reviewer

November 27, 2011
Vanatage Point is a well shot, implausible and mostly diverting puzzle. Like Kurosawa's 'Rashomon' it tells its story through (I think) seven different character perspectives, in the same 10 or so minute time frame, repeated in succession. Unlike Rashomon, the story is the same each time, with some additional details. Plus, the characters in Vantage Point are one dimensional cardboard. What makes Rashomon much more interesting is that in Kurosawa's film we don't know which characters' viewpoint is true and what is not. They are self serving. In this, it's all true and consistent, and all silly.

The only meaty role here is played by Dennis Quaid, who plays a guilt ridden secret service man (he took a bullet for the President) who wants redemption for some reason, even though he's a hero. William Hurt as President and Sigourney Weaver as the TV news director have very little to challenge them and very little complexity. The terrorists are mostly interchangeable.

Director Pete Travis directs the mayhem, car chases and terrorist action beautifully. What falls down here is the silly puzzle script which is more frustrating since most people will sit through the whole thing, hoping for a interesting resolution and will be utterly let down at the end. You realize in the last ten mintues that you've been wasting your time. If you rent this and you turn your brain off, it can be a diverting ninety minutes. Bring lots of snack foods, they'll give you more sustenance than this forgettable thriller.
DreamExtractor
DreamExtractor

Super Reviewer

March 6, 2011
Vantage Point has a cool concept and executes pretty well, but sadly watching the same scene over and over from different perspectives is not as cool as I had hoped, and was kind of boring.
TheDudeLebowski65
TheDudeLebowski65

Super Reviewer

September 28, 2011
Vantage Point is mediocre action fair. The plot at first seemed to be quite interesting, and it was for the most part, however thirty minutes in, the film loses its initial intrigue and becomes pretty silly. I thought that was a great shame, because Vantage Point started off well. One of the reasons that the film does fail is because of the lackluster performances. The plot falls apart, and becomes less intriguing and the film becomes a failure after a while. The concept was very good, but the way the filmmakers carried the films execution was poor. I think that the script with a few rewrites could have something totally good. Unfortunately, the films conclusion doesn't really satisfy, and the entire film ends up being less than decent. This film could have been something really good, unfortunately like I previously stated, the film fails on many levels. The plot falls apart and in the end, the film becomes boring, I was uninterested after a while with what was going on on-screen, and the ending was crap. However Vantage isn't beyond terrible, but it's close. The film is nothing great, it does entertain, but the overall result is a mediocre film that doesn't quite get there. The film had so much potential only to fall apart after thirty minutes or so. Vantage Point could have been improved and better directed. Can't really recommend this one. A film that has an interesting premise, but never really is satisfying.
Sophie B

Super Reviewer

February 20, 2008
Brilliantly thought out, twisted and original. If only a few more 'thrillers' followed a similar narrative plan. Cast was good, plot was good, and the cinematography was good. The only problem I have is that it wasn't really explained why they wanted to take the president. They explicitly wanted him alive. Why?
thmtsang
thmtsang

Super Reviewer

March 5, 2008
This movie is shot in the style of 24 and Boomtown. The US president is assassinated in Spain. You follow a number of eye witnesses and their day up to that point. Great to see Dennis Quaid back in leading roles. Great performances by Forrest Whitaker and Matthew Fox.
Matt G

Super Reviewer

January 23, 2011
Very solid thriller that shows the attempted assassination of the president, being told from five different points of view: 1.Dennis Quaid, 2.Eduardo Noriega, 3.Forrest Whitaker, 4.William Hurt(The President), and 5.Sad Taghmaoui, Edgar Ramirez, Ayelet Zurer, and Matthew Fox(The last rewind has four vantage points.)

Grade: B+
Daniel P

Super Reviewer

January 11, 2008
Vantage Point is a film that's not without its excitement, and though it's hardly the first film to try the tell-the-same-story-from-multiple-viewpoints approach, this challenging style has been put to better use. The film required active watching, and yet it didn't, because it really was, in the end, a run of the mill action flick with only about 55 minutes of story. Challenging style, sure, but it was not met by challenging substance.

After rehashing the same event five times - repetition with difference, very postmodern! - the film slips into an omniscient narrative style, to fill in the gaps for those of us who are unable to put the story together in our minds... and as soon as it does, things start sliding off the table. The action doesn't let up though, and at 90 minutes (barely), they still managed to not overuse what little story they had. The car chase was long, which is good, but nothing much happened and the shooting jumped around too much, which was bad.

A valid attempt at inventive film-making, but one that falls short of its target, Vantage Point is acceptable popcorn fare. And in passing, if you're curious, I don't think there was a single swear word in it. I like authentic film-making, but I have to say, I didn't miss the foul mouths a bit.
KJ P

Super Reviewer

October 1, 2010
I really hate to say that I really don't care for Vantage Point all that much. It is a 20 minute movie replayed about 6 or 7 times with a few new shots thrown in each time. It was a huge disappointment and I don't think I will ever be able to sit through it again!
Jens S

Super Reviewer

December 13, 2007
Extremely fast and exciting action thriller telling the same story from several point of views, each adding a new twist and layer to what seems to be a straight story at first. Before things get too repetitive the showdown shares several protagonists but doesn't live up to the excitement level of the middle part. The acting is great, but fans of the genre shouldn't have such a hard time figuring out the "surprise villain". Still, deeply entertaining and a worthy attempt. Including the best car chase since "Ronin".
garyX
garyX

Super Reviewer

February 23, 2008
A terrorist plot to assassinate the president of the US of A is witnessed from differing viewpoints in the crowd, unravelling an underlying conspiracy. The central conceit of Vantage Point of portraying the same events from different viewpoints is now a very familiar one (Kurosawa did it over half a century ago) and the first half of the film did feel like being trapped in Groundhog Day, but once it settles down it turns into a fairly servicable action thriller. The above par cast certainly help, although the bad guys may as well have been wearing black stetsons making the "twist" deeply unsurprising when it happens but some extremely well done set pieces, particularly a thrilling car chase very much in the spirit of the Bourne films, make it pretty entertaining. It is unfortunately marred by the inevitable Hollywood gloss including a contrived, schmaltzy ending and the involvement of the little girl just reminded me of the dog in Independence Day. It's basically like a season of 24 without the soap and padding, condensed into a two hour story and if that sounds like your kind of thing, give it a go.
Richard C

Super Reviewer

July 29, 2010
a cool inventive way of telling a story but gets old after a while B
Mario M.
Mario M.

Super Reviewer

July 14, 2010
Pete Travis' 2008 film Vantage Point is incredibly exciting. It moves swiftly and keeps you glued to the screen by up the dramatic stakes every ten minutes or so. It's also a pretty ridiculous movie. Its dynamic pacing is necessary to distract the viewer for the fact that it is an incredibly repetitive and increasingly preposterous movie. Vantage Point is like a hyper condensed season of long running TV series 24, sans any humanity.

The film is essentially a Roshmon styled tale of the attempted assassination of a contemporary American President while he attends a security conference in Salamanca, Spain. The narrative of the film loops back approximately 23 minutes from the event and its immediate aftermath, slowly revealing who the key players are and what their various objectives are. This device is a novel concept and proves to be highly compelling. Just when you think you have a solid grip on what happening, more elements are introduced that force you to reconsider; the man who runs up the podium after the president is shot is not an assassin but policeman assigned to protected the mayor of the city; the man who is gunned down is not the President; the assassination itself is revealed to be a ruse. These revelations are delivered in a slam band fashion, with kinetic cinematography by Amir Morki that keeps the chaos tightly controlled and the frantic chases in the film are comparable to the Jason Bourne films. In fact, it would be an excellent film if all the dialog scenes where edited out and it was just a half an hour action reel.

But it isn't. The film is severely hampered by a twisty, increasingly implausible plot. First off the President is revealed to have used a stand-in due to a totally accurate terrorist threat. As the real P.O.T.U.S. is secured far away from the nightmarish happenings in the city center, his sub-plot is built up as more of a reaction to the crisis and how to effectively respond to it until a masked man breaks into his heavy fortified hotel room to kidnap him because the terrorist leader (who must have been a despite of the Jigsaw killer of the Saw films) anticipated the switch out and planned accordingly! This and another sub-plot following Forest Whitaker's befuddled super-tourist (he manages to outpace several secret service agents in their pursuit of a suspect, while saving a deeply unlucky young girl several times) show that while rendered thrilling, the film's story doesn't make any sense.

For one thing, the objective of the film's terrorists is oddly vague. It seems at first they want the President dead, but then want him captured alive, possible for ransom but that's not really made clear. These terrorists also seem to have a network that extends not only to Spanish bellhops and cameramen but also to the American Secret Service, which begs the question, why didn't they just recruit one more guy and nab him at The White House? That along with the terrorist's origin and true intentions (Muslim fifth columnist is my best guess) is left unanswered. However, this is not the film's greatest flaw.

The fact that there isn't a central compelling protagonist is. Dennis Quaid's traumatized Secret Service man is the closest but like all the characters in the film he is too lightly sketched to be really inspire interest. 24's Jack Bauer (Kiefer Sutherland) keeps the show's often zany plots grounded because the audience is given enough time to invest in his success. By giving it's more than five leads less than 30 minutes to connect, the film has to rely on cheap theatrics to provide drama which leaves the film hallow. If you want a non-stop action movie, you do worse but this film is the cinematic equivalent of a bag Lays potato chips, mildly pleasurable but not at all satisfying.
Leigh R

Super Reviewer

November 22, 2007
I didn't really want to see this movie as I was unsure how I would feel with the multiple story views. I was pleasantly surprised... This turned out to be a phenominal movie. Well worth a watch.
Al S

Super Reviewer

September 29, 2007
A full-throttle knockout. It keeps you going every step of the way and it never lets up. A tremendous and spectacular adrenaline-fulled edge of your seat thriller. A smart, gritty, thrilling, compelling, unique and terrifically original film. It's like 24 told in flashbacks and different points of view. Cleverly constructed, well-crafted and superbly shot. 100% pure entertainment with great action sequences and dramatic intensity. Heart-pounding and pulse-pounding throughout. It's loaded with enough gripping suspense, rip-roaring tension and non-stop action to fuel this sensational nail-bitter. An outstanding and brilliant all-star cast that just shine with perfection. Dennis Quaid is riveting. Matthew Foxx is terrific. Forest Whitaker is excellent. William Hurt is brilliant. It works well in it's time frame and makes the story and it's characters role perfectly. An excellent movie. It's relentless, shocking, spellbinding and unforgettable. It will knock you out and take your breath away. It's endlessly satisfying, sensational, razor-sharp and mind-blowing. A wickedly entertaining twist-a-minute action flick.
Carlos M

Super Reviewer

December 25, 2009
The premise is interesting, even though not too original, and there are many great action scenes, but the film relies on numerous coincidences and the actors are mostly wasted in badly developed characters.
Conner R

Super Reviewer

November 18, 2009
A ridiculous plot and horrible acting from pretty much everyone. It seems like they were trying to go for an edgy crime thriller, but just resulted in an incomprehensible plot that I didn't even care about in the first place.
Dan S

Super Reviewer

October 25, 2009
Interesting premise is ruined by shoddy acting and a predictable twist that you should see coming. With a great cast, you'd expect more, instead it's just your standard thriller with a dumb ending and really no point. A "Memento" wannabe.
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