Lucy: Movie Review

Disclaimer: Being as this is my first movie review here, I’ll give a quick disclaimer. I’ve read some pretty nasty movie reviews from professional critics. They can really tear into a movie, even pretty decent movies. They can give a movie a piss poor rating simply because they disagree with it, not because it was a bad movie. So here’s what’s important for me:  Was the movie enjoyable? Did the movie deliver what it advertised? Would I see it again in theaters and/or would I buy the DVD?

I caught this movie Saturday night, on July 26, 2014 at the Santee Drive in Theater. With the windshield nice and clean, and some sour licorice, I was ready to rock n’ roll for the first movie of our double feature (with the second title being: “The Purge: Anarchy”)

Universal Studio’s “Lucy” 2014

With Scarlett Johansson and Morgan Freeman as front runners, you’ve got some wind in your sails. We’re about to see two A list actors who’ve dominated the silver screen in their respective Marvel and DC movies in the past several years.

As you could have taken away from the trailer, “Lucy” is about a girl Lucy, played by Scarlet Johansson, who through a series of unfortunate events has a bag of mysterious substance sewn into her belly by criminals bent on smuggling them to be used as the next hardcore party drug. Misfortune befalls her again, and the substance leaks into her body, transforming her into something special. The movie circles around the idea of what would happen if humans could utilize more or all of our brain’s capacity, and what that entails.

Right from the get go the movie smells a lot like “Limitless”, in that a hapless person finds themselves mixed up with seedy people, and a man-made substance intended to be used as an illicit street drug ends up turning the protagonist into a quantum computerized UFC fighter.

Limitless seems much more plausible, in that by using more of our brain, or using our brain more efficiently, we can retain and recall more knowledge, and better utilize it. We could also better hone and take advantage of our senses, detecting things we would have otherwise ignored, all the while still functionally and personally remaining human.

Lucy takes this a step further, proposing that if we could use more of our brain, in addition to all of the above, we would develop all new senses, and a plethora of new abilities, including but not limited to telepathy, telekinesis, time travel, and much, much more.

Scene of Lucy altering digital data
Universal Studio’s “Lucy” 2014

There wasn’t really an antagonist. Early in the movie the title character proved that she is more than capable of taking care of herself, even when severely outnumbered against hardened bad guys. Because of this, it’s like watching a kid who is stepping on ants, and expecting you to root against the helpless ants. When the main character is virtually unstoppable, it takes some of the fun out of it. This is even explicitly mentioned in the movie, when a secondary character aiding Lucy states that he is useless to her, and that she should continue without him.

It has enough cool Jason Bourne-esque fight scenes, shoots outs, car chases, and multi-lingual prowess to keep you entertained, even if the story itself doesn’t do the job. Johansson plays her script well, though her character is robotic and hard to cozy up next to. Thankfully Morgan Freeman’s character was present, and lent some much needed humanity and morality to the movie.

Essentially the movie boils down to do the idea that if you ingest enough blue Jell-O you will not only be able to utilize 100% of your brain, but also become omnipotent and devoid of emotion.

Was it enjoyable? Not really. As stated, the only enjoyable parts were the action sequences, which would be served better by a dedicated action movie. For enjoyment factor, I give this movie a B-.

Did it deliver what it advertised? Absolutely. A sci-fi movie about people using 100% of their brains is what they put down, and what the viewer picks up. In this regards, Lucy gets an A.

Would I buy the DVD? No. Straight up no. I probably wouldn’t bother watching it on Netflix either.

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