when I first started seeing the previews for Columbia’s
new movie Stealth, my first thoughts were pretty
much along the lines of “Wow. That looks bad.”
I was expecting a CGI fluff piece, and I was sorely disappointed
to see Jamie Foxx following up stellar performances in Ray
with something that seemed pretty brainless.
while Stealth is still basically a CGI fluff piece,
it manages to be an enjoyable, loud, and, in terms of the
CGI, beautifully done fluff piece.
basic premise is this: it’s the near future, and the
Naval Air Force has teamed up 3 of the best pilots they
have to form an elite fighter group, who pilot the most
advanced planes in the air. They are joined by a computer
controlled craft, who will train with them, and learn from
them. But of course, things go wrong, and their new wingman
becomes a new enemy.
is a lot more to the plot of the movie than the trailer
would have you believe. It extends beyond the ‘bad
robot’ bits that the trailer shows, and there is a
human factor that ups the movie from summer schlock, though
there are plenty of things that drag it back down.
characters that are interesting and well played by actors
like Josh Lucas and Jessica Biel, but still very stereotypically
shown, and not very well developed. They’re pilots and
military, so we get the bad military jokes and behaviors,
including the flyboy strutting and womanizing. Our
real villain (who will remain anonymous, so as not to spoil
anything) also plays it by the book, in terms of what he’ll
do to keep things quiet.
of the smaller events in the movie are a bit hokey, and
the entire first part of the movie is what you expect from
the trailer. It’s really the second half of the movie
where things get interesting, with a few plot twists, mixed
in with a few gimmicks, and while there is some predictability,
you get a kind of satisfaction from it, not disappointment.
best part of the entire movie is, of course, the special
effects and CGI. There are a lot of pretty explosions in
Stealth (something I think Rob Cohen, the director,
is very familiar with), and they are fantastic to watch.
What little testosterone I have in my body enjoyed every
single explosion immensely.
what I enjoyed even more were the CGI fighter jets and the
fight sequences involving them. They were incredibly realistic,
beautifully rendered, and just spectacular to watch. They
keep most of the physics of flying intact, and while you
do have to suspend disbelief just a tad, it’s really
worth it. Honestly, some of the best visual effects I’ve
seen in a very long time make Stealth worth seeing
on the big screen.
are actually elements of the movie that make me want to
compare it to the video game movies we’ve been seeing
lately. It has that same level of depth to it. Not a lot
of character, not a lot of plot, but a ton of special effects
that are meant to carry the movie. Really, watching the
entire movie though, I could easily see this as a mission
based flight simulator game. And a fun one too, but one
where the gameplay graphics translated to screen beautifully,
but the story got lost along the way.
Stealth is your basic summertime explosion flick.
Lots of guns and noises for the boys, and a bit of romance
for the few ladies they might want to draw. It’s fun,
but it’s also a no brainer.
I have to say… it’d make a fantastic video game.