Sunday, August 30, 2009

B.W. At The Movies: Know1ng

To me the wheels started coming off Know1ng when Nicolas Cage's character stalks a young woman and introduces himself under false pretenses. He could have called her up and explained that he was an MIT professor with some questions about her mother, and that would have avoided some awkward moments later. But no, he has to present himself under circumstances that would convince any normal woman she needs to get herself and her daughter away from this psycho.

If that was the only hole in this film's plot, however, it might have been forgiven. If only.

Cage's character's wife died a year earlier; his bitterness leaves him talking about how life on Earth is either predetermined or a series of fantastic, chaotic coincidences — and he chooses to believe in chaos. The movie turns out to be about how he finds out the truth.

I will say no more. The only value in seeing this movie is to be surprised by its journey away from its promising premise — a strange little girl in 1959 produces a series of numbers that correctly predicts major disasters over the next 50 years, and the last three are yet to come — and into a, well, into what it becomes.

OK, I have one observation that may spoil the surprise for those intrigued enough to spend two valuable hours of their lives watching Know1ng: In some ways this movie's finale reminded me of James Cameron's marvelous film The Abyss, which I consider the man's true masterpiece. (I gagged on a titanic spoon enduring his more famous water movie.) The main difference is that The Abyss is a really good movie.

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