Paul Cook 14/01/2007
Tony Scott's career undulates unnecessarily. He is incredibly talented. Top Gun, the Last Boy Scout even Man on Fire, despite the disappointment at the box office were great films. His most recent release, Déjà Vu starring Denzel Washington, now officially the second highest paid actor ever, is visceral and compelling regardless of how truly ridiculous and hugely inconceivable the plot is.
It certainly takes a brilliant story to make a film iconic but it's not always necessar make a film successful. Without going into to many details, Washington ends up pursuing a terrorist in New Orleans. The difference being, he has the aid of a revolutionary new technology which allows him to look 4 days into the past.
The film ends up being more about the technology at times, than the story or the star. The stylish look of the film makes it a joy to watch with dozens of helicopter-shots that give the film a swift, objective viewpoint intertwined with incredible special effects and a typically suave, heroic performance from Washington.
Visually, this film stuns and as a cinematic experience it is pleasing to all the senses. This film will probably slip under the radar of must-see films to rent or buy on DVD as did Man on Fire but it should be seen before it's judged. Ignore the 'fold space in half and look into the past' science that apparently justifies this film's time machine theory and disengage that part of your brain that wants to just rip the film apart. Tony Scott is one of today's greatest suspense directors and qualities show through in this film that Hitchcock would applaud. Armed with a decent script and believable storyline Scott could make a masterpiece.
Unfortunately this isn't the one but he's created a contemporary and starkly topical film with a plot structured to enhance tension but question the boundaries of human imagination. In other words it won't be fooling anyone but it will entertain everyone.