Film Reviews

JUMPER

By • Feb 11th, 2008 •

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Finally a superpower human without the need to do good for humanity. No ending since it’s a 90 minute trailer for Christensen’s starring franchise.

Remember the old days when knowledge was jealously guarded by, first the pharaohs and kings, and then the Catholic Church? With the internet, there is no more secret knowledge. It’s all out there. And now it’s more important to be beautiful than smart. You can get bank loans for cosmetic surgery, so what’s next to set people apart? Well, in the near future (after we have sex with robots: David Levy, author of “Sex with Robots: The Evolution of Human-Robot Relations”, says that in 400 years humans will be able to buy an electronic femme-fatale or a superstud sexbot as easily as a flat-screen TV), after we have been genetically engineered to be beautiful, we’ll want super powers.
But right now it’s just a squirmy quirk of mutant DNA. All superheroes and anti-superheroes have terrible childhoods. Its something everyone can relate to.

When David Rice was five years old his mother vanished and he was raised by a brutal, neglectful father who never brought him a birthday gift or noticed his son had an unusual gift. This gift, by the way, only serves David.

When a teenager, an accident causes David to consciously recognize his power to teleport anywhere. It took him 12 years to dope things out.

After learning about David’s teen years, we “jump” forward to present time, where David (Hayden Christensen) is living The Life in a luxury duplex in New York City! He goes into bank vaults and takes as much cash as he wants. (I would go to Hermes, thereby “jumping” the two year wait list for “the Birkin”.) But David is a really good guy. He leaves I.O.U.s. He can take stuff with him (unlike Invisible People who have to go around naked).

Apparently, for some reason, David needs “jump sites.” I’ve been to the Sphinx. David goes there in 1900, before the onslaught of the tourists, The Mall, and Pizza Hut. (Did you know the Sphinx, whose legacy was to look out into Infinity, now has a Pizza Hut directly in front of it blocking Time and Space? You can buy a high-rise apartment looking out at the Sphinx’s broken nose.)

The Sphinx is one of David’s jump sites. No one sees him sitting on top of the Sphinx’s head. Zahi Hawass, High Priest of The Sphinx and Great Pyramids complex, is off-site digging in sand for a bigger find than Howard Carter.

With the world literally his, David decides to go back to his hometown and romance his high school first crush, Millie (Rachel Bilson).

Hey, David’s life is shattered when he finds out he’s not the only one with this talent. And, he’s targeted for death. He’s being tracked by Griffin (Jamie Bell) for 10 years. Griffin must be obsessed with David since he has a police wall charting his every more. Griffin is also a Jumper.

Griffin doesn’t bother to explain a thing, especially about the nefarious Paladins, a centuries-old secret society that has been hunting Jumpers. They are all-powerful and vanquish Jumpers with high doses of electricity (tethers). David’s nemesis is fanatic Roland (Samuel L. Jackson) who believes that the Jumpers are snubbing their nose at God.

David runs into Griffin at the Coliseum and, followed by Roland’s men – who can “jump” also – the fight destroys the place. David has taken Rachel there to impress her by getting into a big fight and destroying the place.

I liked the special effects and the storyline – thin though it was. The full story must have been tethered into the netherworld.

While Christensen may be following in Ryan Phillippe’s career path (Robert Rodriguez, please give Ryan a terrific starring role), he’s perfect here as a confused slacker with no direction except to tramp around the world.

However, now that he’s met Griffin and Roland, he has a mission in life.

I will not ruin the silliness of David’s parentage “reveal” that desperately needs a script doctor asap, or bland Bilson. Only Bell, with a bemused hobo look (and an unrealized homoerotic fixation on David that will be dealt with in his Berber lair dwelling).

This franchise has a lot of potential, but what happened to director Doug Liman? He seems to have directed JUMPER from the sofa of his MR. AND MRS. SMITH mansion. There is absolutely no heat between Christensen and Bilson or Christensen and Jackson. I had originally thought that Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt were just cleverly directed by Liman to behave as sexy beasts.

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