DVD Mindscape

DVD Mindscape
DVD Mindscape
Run time: 99 min
Rating: 6.4
Genres: Drama | Thriller
Director: Jorge Dorado
Writers: Guy Holmes, Martha Holmes
Stars: Mark Strong, Taissa Farmiga, Brian Cox
Storyline
In the near future or an alternate reality, there are memory detectives, people who have the ability to enter other peoples’ electronically aided memories. They often are used to resolve psychological conflicts, and sometimes to exonerate someone from a crime. John was at one time the top in this field but he has been recovering from the death of his wife, and a stroke. To get back into work the head of the small firm he works for offers him what is supposed to be a simple job, getting 16 year old Anna to start eating again. However, the “simple job” turns into his most challenging. Written by Qfal
Plot Keywords: teenager, one word title
Details:
Country: USA, Spain, France
Release Date: 24 January 2014 (Spain)

4 Comments

  1. This movie has a 6.4 rating as of May 2014 which is slightly too low I think. I give it a 7.5 out of 10. I have noticed that thrillers, unless they are great thrillers like The Usual Suspects etc.. are scored very low because of two reasons. Firstly thrillers are general slow paced at first and build suspense and tension. Some people lose interest quickly. Secondly, some people just don't get it. Due to the audience not following the dynamics of the thriller they score it low.

    The title Anna is a better title than Mindscape in my opinion because the story is a personal story about the character Anna and the main character's memory of his past love also named Anna.

    The main concept of Anna is not original and there are little things in the movies that require you to suspend belief etc etc etc…like all movies it is not perfect…but I really enjoyed the movie..I think the acting was great from Mark Strong and the support cast..I didn't know that the young girl, played by Taissa Farmiga, is the younger sister of Vera Farmiga. She is excellent.

    I think the story was predictable and I would have done something slightly different to make it less predictable but I can't explain further without spoiling. Having said that I still really enjoyed the movie. It is much better than most thrillers out there, some with much bigger budgets.

    Some reviewers have posted on the message board that they didn't like the details..I loved the details, this is what elevates the movie above most..it may not always be believable but Hey! we are watching a movie about a guy who can enter peoples memories, what was everyone expecting…

    It is a really interesting thriller that is well acted and despite being predictable it has a very clever plot versus underlying plot script…I recommend it above the majority of thrillers out there….great work!

  2. Again: Many spoilers ahead.

    At first, I kind of liked this movie – the two lead characters are well played, and so is their relationship as it develops through the meandering memories and the developments in the supposedly real world. It's adequately somber. The twists towards the end were a bit obvious in my opinion – of course she was luring him to the house and setting him up, and of course these were his memories, with the distant guy watching in precisely the way the main character explains at the beginning.

    Unfortunately, once you start to think about the plot, it falls apart.

    He's a detective, yet he doesn't really look at any of the clues he has taken home (e.g., the yearbook) in any depth until after the case is practically closed. Nice evidence board decoration he had on the wall – he should have perhaps drawn one up for this case too. And when called, he does this oh so old stupid movie mistake of rushing in without telling anybody. When will movie writers finally stop using that?

    Her side is even worse. There were signs of her interacting with the outside world, e.g., her drawing of stairs where he believes to have seen her. Was she able to occasionally escape? Apart from that, nothing of her whole back-story was explained; did she or did she not commit any crimes? Had she just been at the wrong place in the wrong time? How much was fabricated by her, how much was honest? What was with that "Mousey" confusion? Who was lying about what now? And finally: If she wanted to be assumed dead to get away from her parents, didn't sending the picture refute that purpose entirely? What is she living on now anyway? If running away was all she wanted, she evidently didn't need this convoluted plan to do so. When our main guy arrived at the house, the doors were already wide open.

    I guess you can explain some of those aspects away with "those were just his memories of her memories", but frankly, I think that's just an excuse for a script which was too obsessed with its twists.

  3. Based on the reviews of this movie that I read on this site, I went into this film with high hopes. 90 minutes later,I was truly perplexed as to what all the buzz was about. Maybe films today are so bad that even "average" rates as "very good"? Well, I don't know, and while the film was not a total waste of time, it had little to offer,and was not as half as interesting as the reviews had lead me to believe it would be. The good: The beginning of the movie is very well set up: the movie takes place in the not too distant future where there are people who have the ability to recover and view the memories of others. The protagonist of the movie is a broken down memory reader in need of money and so he goes back to his old employer in search of a job.He is given a "simple" assignment: get a very precocious teenager to eat. But said teenager is *very* smart and not what she appears to be… Both the male lead (the returning memory recovery expert) and female lead ("Anna",the teenager) are played very well. The bad: Very convoluted plot, which devised to make the movie intriguing,in the end was a little over the top and maybe too clever for its own good. The ugly: The ending. Much ado about nothing. I was surprised that after all the complex twists and turns in the move it all came down to (what was in my opinion) an ending that is simple but unfortunately didn't really make much sense.

  4. First let's get the whole "dynasty" issue out of the way. These days in Hollywood, more care and attention is spent launching the careers of offspring/sibling than at any other point in film history. For example, in other reviews, I commented negatively on Will Smith's courageous attempts to turn his son into the next de Niro. Not going to happen, sorry Will.. This is a different story. Taissa Farmiga has got spark, she's got grit, she's got glow. This is a dynasty that just might find some traction.

    Next let's talk about the science because most people won't even know there actually is science. The original title of the film was Mindscape which was borrowed/stolen from the scientific work of the same name by Dr.'s Targ and Puthoff, based on their work done at SRI in the 80s. Using double-blind protocols, their work established for the first time the scientific validity of the RV phenomenon, even though the media mocked them for years afterwards. In other words, the science for this film is not necessarily from Crazytown. That's helpful to know.

    As for the film itself, it is surprisingly engaging given its very strange pedigree. Directed by a Spanish director, the film has not one but three major British talents — Mark Strong, Brian Cox and Indira Varma– all going "accentless" just for this production.

    Overall, this film is also unusual in that it faithfully demonstrates the stoic and disciplined direction one generally associates with British TV drama — although clearly intended for US audiences. The above comment is actually not a criticism at all, but (to be fair) US viewers may find the pacing slow. It isn't. It is just very, very, controlled.

    Mark Strong's character is the "glue" that keeps the film together This requires him to be simpatico with the audience, and he is. Ironically, the actual script requires Strong's character to "have trouble staying grounded" (quote), yet it is precisely Strong's ability to ground the film that keeps it flowing.

    As for the story itself, to go into detail would likely spoil it. I would really really like to tell you that the theme behind it is new but it simply isn't. (If you are a curious cinephile, look up the 2003 production LIFE OF David GALE.)

    Bottom line: good clean fun. But what this film will be remembered for is young Farmiga.

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