84 of 92 people found the following review helpful
While I've never read the Philip Dick story this movie is based on, I'll have to say this story has some strong points on its own. Nicolas Cage is great as "Frank Cadillac" or Chris, as he prefers to be called. He can see two minutes into his own future, and this opens some interesting possibilities. It's funny to see him run through several different pick up scenarios before finally finding one that will work with Jessica Biel. This ability also saves his life several times.
The storyline moves along at a good pace. While there are some boring scenes, there are enough "Wow!" moments to keep you hooked until the end.
Ah, the end...there's our problem. In an attempt to pull out a great plot twist, we end up with a very cheated feeling. It's almost as if we don't get to see how it all ultimately works out. This could have been fixed with about 5 minutes more screen time, but we don't get it. I'm pretty sure the DVD will probably have an alternate ending in there somewhere because I can't believe this is how they originally envisioned it.
As a whole, this was a good movie and I really enjoyed it. It wasn't perfect, and seemed to stumble under the weight of its plot a couple of times (who were the terrorists? where did they get the bomb? Why would a woman like Jessica Biel agree to drive a man she'd just met across the desert...especially when the guy looked like a psycho?), but it was worth the time it takes to watch it.
25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on May 12, 2007
Next is a movie based on a classic science fiction theme, the "small" wild talent. It is based on a short story by Philip K Dick, the great science fiction writer whose stories have inspired numerous movies; works by Dick were also the basis for "Blade Runner" (Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep), "Total Recall" (We Can Remember It For You Wholesale), "Minority Report," and "A Scanner Darkly," among others, Nick Cage plays Frank Cadillac, a Las Vegas stage mentalist who can actually see the future; the catch is that he can normally only see his own future, and only 2 minutes ahead. He has made a life living "under the radar," exploiting his talent in minor ways, until a rare precognitive glimpse beyond his 2 minute horizon reveals to him the woman that he is destined to be with.
The film is extraordinarily well crafted, gradually introducing the audience to the nature of Frank's power. There is a terrorist nuclear bomb subplot that provides a major plot motivator. With "24" now in its 6th season, this is already beginning to seem a bit tired as a plot device. Nevertheless it keeps things moving and offers Cage's character a fundamental dilemma: what good is a 2 minute warning against a nuclear bomb? In addition, Frank is being chased by Julianne Moore as a federal agent who has figured out Frank's talent and hopes to use it to find the bomb. I found this to be the one serious plot weakness, in that there is not enough of a backstory to explain how Moore's character has become so convinced that she absolutely must have Frank on her side to stop the bomb.
Initially, we see only the effects of Frank's power as he effortlessly evades capture in some beautifully crafted chase scenes, but as the film proceeds, we begin to become privy to Frank's glimpses of the future. I can't recall whether I ever read the Phil Dick story (The Golden Man) that the film is based upon, but it introduces a type of uncertainty that Dick loved to play with, in that we become less and less certain whether we are viewing the actual present or one of the many alternative futures that Frank sees. For Frank, the future has almost a Schrodinger's Cat quality, since just by looking at his future, he changes it. There is a wonderful scene toward the end in which Frank becomes a sort of quantum cloud of alternative Franks working his way through a booby-trapped factory.
The reviews I saw for this movie were not impressive, but film reviewers have always tended to have trouble appreciating Phil Dick. I thought that it was pretty nearly perfect. The ending, which I won't reveal, might strike some as a bit of a "bait-and-switch" but I thought that it worked perfectly, because by that time I was very much into Franks mindset in which possible futures become as real as present experience. There is one scene in which Jessica Biehl's character says something like, "life should be a surprise," and Frank says wistfully, "That would be nice."
The acting is top notch. Cage clearly appreciates science fiction, and is listed as a producer, and he is very convincing as Frank. Biehl and Julianne Moore round out the strong cast.
Be sure and stay for the credits, by the way; there is a minor joke.
The concept of the two minute warning is a great one, and my only real complaint about the movie is that I'd like to see this idea played out at even greater length. Perhaps Cage will consider producing a TV series with a similar character.
38 of 43 people found the following review helpful
on August 3, 2007
Next brings to the screen the story of Chris Johnson, a.k.a. Frank Cadillac, a down-on-his-luck onstage Las Vegas magician with a rare gift: to be able to see two minutes into the future! Things "liven up" when a government agent in her effort to find a group of terrorists aiming at detonating a nuclear bomb somewhere in the United States attempts to enlist Chris Johnson who seems to be rather preoccupied with other matters...
There are slight hints of the X-Files, Deja Vu (Denzel Washington), Frequency (Dennis Quaid, James Caviezel), Timecop (Van Damme) and The Lake House (Keanu Reeves, Sandra Bullock).
Nicolas Cage, Julianne Moore, Jessica Biel, and the rest of the cast, have truly outdone themselves with their performances, which are outstanding to say the least! All the actors, without exceptions, give it their 100% and it really shows (the chemistry is AMAZING)! Very well written and very well presented, the movie is without a doubt guaranteed to provide more than just a few thrills.
The only major setback is in relation to those "geniuses" that came up with the French-speaking Europeans as the villains and with no explanation whatsoever as to their motive! It's not as if there aren't enough prospective terrorists out there, they're lining up for crying out loud, so why go with some of the most unlikely candidates?
What European would even bother to act as such in reality???
Nevertheless, the setting, the plot, the dialogues, and the music are all good.
In conclusion, Next is a movie definitely worth watching and one to seriously consider adding to your movie collection as it is one of those films that gets you and keeps you thinking long after it's over. 4.5 Stars
14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
on September 25, 2007
Next, a movie based on the Philip K. Dick short story, is very clever in spots. Nicholas Cage plays a precognative gmbler/magician who can see two minutes into the future. The interesting thing in this movie is that he can see all possible futures; this led to some interesting scenes in the movie. The plot revolves around terrorists planning to blow up LA who finad out that this guy could upset their master plan. Government agents are looking for this guy too for the same reason. Ahh, terrorism, the all purpose plot device - why blow up LA? Just because I guess - whatever..
Anyway, the special effects are cool, there are some good action sequences and Cage is a good choice to play the main character in the movie. Its not worth the 9-10 bucks it would have taken to see this in the theatres but it is worth renting/buying on sale.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on April 29, 2007
I am happy to say I really enjoyed this movie. I read some bad reviews of it online, but wanted to give the movie a chance. I'm glad I did.
Nicolas Cage plays a character that can see 2 minutes into the future, which is certainly a superhuman ability. You can imagine many of the scenarios that might unfold through use of this ability, but the movie manages to keep it fresh and interesting. I think the subtleties of his ability and actions are portrayed very well. He is quite the smooth operator, and plenty cool. There is a lot of action in this movie, and it is exciting from the start. I also liked the fact that love enhances his ability, and liked Jessica Biel as his love interest. If there was a flaw in this movie, it would be the ending, which left something to the imagination... a bit too much to the imagination by some people's standards. However it doesn't ruin the movie in my opinion. I only buy movies that I really like and want to see again many times. This is one of those movies. Check it out!
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on November 3, 2007
Okay, let us start with the positives. Nicholas Cage and the rest of the cast are fantastic. Special affects are nice. and the whole look into the future for two minutes thing is a neat and original idea. Action scenes are fun and fast paced.
The writing is terrible. The FBI knows that an A-bomb is going to be detonated and they know where. But instead of detective work and attempting to find the people who are going to detonate the bomb, they are dumping their resources (not all their resources but the use of even one agent for this would be criminal) into finding a guy who can see 2 WHOLE MINUTES INTO THE FUTURE!!! Yeah, that is useful. Julianne Moore's character thinks she can use Cage's ability to find the bomb which is somewhere in L.A. Of course, if the bomb isn't within 2 minutes travel time of her office her plan won't work. Oh, and her bomb squad will have less than two minutes to de-activate the bomb. Oh, but wait the films premise gets even weaker from here.
The bad guys are also looking for Cage's character. How do they know who Cage is? How do they know what his power is? How can they be as stupid as Julianne Moore by thinking that Cage could stop them? We don't know and we are never told. The ending of this film is terrible and cheats its way out of having to explain most of the problems with the script (But I won't spoil it).
The bottom line is that Next is a movie with a premise, a twist, and without a plot. It is a fun movie to watch, as long as you turn your brain off early in the film, and I think it is worth a rent. But it is a little disappointing that the movie producers couldn't find anyone to write a decent script for this movie.
24 of 32 people found the following review helpful
Next starring Nicolas Cage is an action thriller about a magician who can see exactly two minutes into the future. Julianne Moore plays an FBI agent who recruits him to help prevent a bombing by Terrorist. Peter Faulk(aka Columbo) has a small part in the movie. It's nice to see him still working.
This movie has an underlying Science Fiction/ Fantasy theme, something that seems to be happening more and more these days. I was surprised to find this. I don't recall it being promoted at all.
Highly recommended for fans of Nicolas Cage and Julianne Moore and Peter Faulk and Science Fiction/ Fantasy movies.
Gunner April, 2008
12 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on May 13, 2007
This is your Swiss-cheese thriller for the summer of 2007. You know, with so many holes that they're almost par for the course, but the overall experience is one of momentary delight anyway. You savor it, then you go on your merry way. Suspend disbelief for best results.
The whole crux of the movie is the FBI's frenetic hunt for a bunch of handsome European miscreants (sporting a bouquet of dialects) who're about to detonate a nuclear warhead in or around LA. The reason? Not sure. Perhaps to make a big bada boom. Perhaps to look real scary. We will never know, nor, I suspect, would the FBI team from the film. But that's not to stop them from acting all pensive and thriller-like. It showers much of the spotlight on light humor involving the protagonist and his love interest instead. He's a magician with a special skill that you should find out for yourself, and she's, well, magical. Some liberal scatter-shot editing follows, but it's a fun ride. The visuals of the Grand Canyon (that's what they were I presume?) are breathtaking. The ending credits roll does justice to the theme, and may get a final round of laughter.
There is no way this film merits a serious review, but I will take the time to report one serious gripe: the hairstyles! Tom Hanks may have done an enormous disfavor to the cinematic community by sporting his little rumpled tuft in Da Vinci Code, which seems to have taken off -- Jim Carrie in 23, and now Nicholas Cage here. Time for some scissors, Hollywood! As for Julianne Moore, she's an actress in such fine form that although she's evidently in the middle of something goofy she brings to it the kind of pizazz one would expect from an actual blockbuster.
Don't confuse the film with Michael Crichton's novel of the same name, be prepared for a pastime flick at the intellectual caliber of National Treasure, get your Coke and choco-chip icecream, and buckle up to enjoy a basically senseless ride.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on August 21, 2011
I can't see how anyone can rate this movie less than a five. The story is brilliant. It has every element that you could possibly ask for in a movie. It's even complete with an unexpected twist. This is truly a movie that I can watch over and over and enjoy it each time. If you have less than average intelligence, it might be beyond your comprehension level. Oherwise, buy it, you'll like it.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on August 16, 2007
The first thing I have to say about this movie, is bravo to director Lee Tamahori for bringing to life a different idea for a change. While there have been a hundred movies about time travel, or precognition, this particular rendition is unique, and very refreshing.
Nicholas Cage now has a very large body of work in his ever growing resume' of movies, and unfortunately, they have been a mixed bag of nuts at best. I would say that only about 60% of the movies he is in are truly worth watching, but that 60% are very good movies spanning serious roles, comedic, bad guy, good guy, weird guy, ghost, and everything else in-between!
Nicholas is one of those actors that some how just him acting the same way, or just being himself in each movie just works. There are very few actors that can get away with this, and end up with the long careers that Nicholas has had. He has this way about him that is unique, and can just be used over and over and never seems to get old.
"Next" is a fun, and fast paced movie about a night club magician in Las Vegas who has an unusual act of guessing "What will happen next." The only difference with Nicholas's character, Chris Johnson, a.k.a Frank Cadillac, is that his act, is NOT an act. He actually has a real gift. Chris can see into the future a very short amount of time, but enough to where he can effect what happens to him, and his surroundings.
The trouble all starts when an F.B.I. agent Callie Ferris (played by Julianne Moore) finds out about Chris's ability, and talks her superiors into letting her acquire his aid (whether he likes it or not) in trying to thwart a terrorist bomb attack on U.S. soil.
Chris is able to escape the F.B.I.'s attempts to capture him several times with his love interest Liz Cooper (played by Jessica Biel) in tow by simply looking into the future in just enough time to see what their plans are, and precisely at the right moment slip through their fingers.
Eventually the F.B.I. does catch up with him, but not before pulling an amazing split second rescue of the main F.B.I. agent Callie. There is no real way to describe in words how Chris pulls these stunts off, but the people in charge of the C.G.I. do a fantastic job. One particular scene that is really mind bending, is towards the end of the movie when Chris, Liz, Callie, and a team of F.B.I. agents are stumbling through a warehouse trying to locate this bomb planted by the terrorist group, and the camera shows Chris splitting himself up in the future a hundred different ways searching through the warehouse trying to avoid booby trap type bombs set to blow up if someone walks past them.
This is about as far as I can take you with regards to the plot without playing the spoiler, so I will end on this note. Director Lee Tamahori, does manage to pull of a very good over all "look" and "feel" to the movie, and overall the movie was very entertaining. I think if they were to kick things up a notch, they could easily pull off a sequel that would overshadow the first.
My rating for this movie is 7.50 out of 10.00