A teacher opens a time capsule that has been dug up at his son's elementary school; in it are some chilling predictions -- some that have already occurred and others that are about to -- that lead him to believe his family plays a role in the events that are about to unfold.
Knowing is Everything...
I was unsure whether I wanted to watch Knowing, which was marketed as some sort of sci-fi “end of the world” movie. In the end I did, but I wish I hadn't. Here's why…
The main reason why I was skeptical about this movie was the leading man – Nicolas Cage, whose recent movies have been barely watchable at best. Firstly, there was the terrible remake of the British classic The Wicker Man followed by the awful comic-book adaptation Ghost Rider. I thought Next was OK, but that was probably down to the Philip K. Dick sci-fi story and a relatively strong supporting case. Most recently Cage starred in Bangkok Dangerous, a Hollywood remake of Thai movie of the same name, which was directed by the same people – the Pang Brothers. After this movie I questioned why I would continue to watch movies in which the advertisement campaign focused around Cage as the draw.
The only reason which I think made me watch this movie was it's director – Alex Proyas. Proyas made a name for himself with The Crow, a cult-classic gothic comic-book movie, then in 1998 with Dark City, a gritty noir-style science-fiction movie featuring a creepy city-controlling cult who can stop time and re-arrange the city streets. Unfortunately, Dark City has remained relatively unknown, as it was released around the time of the Matrix which was extremely successful and featured the same gritty existential sci-fi themes. Proyas last directed I, Robot which was relatively well-received with the public, featured high production values and a starring man in Will Smith – this is the same formula followed by Knowing but with no where the same effectiveness.
Some of the special effects were very good, such as the plane crash which can be seen in the trailer and the final disaster scenes. The premise of numbers successfully predicting information such as the disasters shown in the movie is an interesting concept, but I felt this was completely under explored. However, the acting by Cage was what I'd come to expect from recent performances – very poor, wooden and forced. The final third of the movie felt apart for me. I was especially irked by the religious overtones, which were totally overdone in the final scenes. There were a few other strange scenes which annoyed me – especially some unintentionally comical dialogue and actions, therefore I can not recommend the movie.
I hope Alex Proyas continues to make sci-fi movies, as there seems to be a definite drought in this genre. But I feel he may be better suited to darker and lower-budget style of movie making, so I hope we see him return to that.