Things have been kinda heavy lately (hence me not posting much), so I ended up in a conversation with a friend of mine about how we are just looking for light things to watch. Basically action movies that we can turn our brains off while watching.
I had just rewatched Starship Troopers a few days earlier while getting things done around my apartment, so I recommended that. Somehow that made me start thinking about the movie Edge of Tomorrow. Later in the day, I announced to my girlfriend that I would be watching Edge of Tomorrow that evening, to which she replied, “What is it with you and watching so many Tom Cruise movies?” This gave me pause. Do I watch a lot of Tom Cruise movies? Answer: fuck yes, I do.
In her defense, I talked up the Mission: Impossible movies so much at one point that by the time Mission: Impossible – Fallout was hitting theaters, she was almost as excited as I was. Probably just so I would shut the fuck up about “The Syndicate.”
I also speak frequently about how much I enjoy when big name actors show up in random movies in smaller roles where they don’t feel like they need the audience to find them charming. And, to me, the perfect example of this is Tom Cruise in Tropic Thunder. We should hate him in that. His character’s a piece of shit. And, yet, he gets some of the biggest laughs. That movie also has Matthew McConaughey doing a similar thing, but to a lesser degree. You can like him or not in that movie, but he is going all out on making sure you know how dumb shit is.
Also…again, to defend the question about me watching so many Tom Cruise movies, I did a rewatch of Magnolia on my birthday because I love Paul Thomas Anderson movies and I haven’t seen it in a while. Plus it was on Netflix, so I didn’t have to get off my lazy ass and put a DVD in the player. It was my birthday, what was I gonna do? Get off the couch?
Magnolia isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. It’s honestly kinda low on my rankings of P.T. Anderson movies. And Tom Cruise’s character is a gigantic piece of shit in it. But I think being Tom Cruise helps pull that off. What a loathsome garbage person Frank T.J. Mackey is. But the second he starts losing it, sitting by the deathbed of the father that abandoned him and who he’s hated for most of his life, it’s like, “Oh, right! Tom Cruise doesn’t only run in movies!”
There’s a lot to be said about Tom Cruise. For many people, most of those things involve an organization he is heavily involved in that I won’t reference to stay out of court. He did some publicly weird shit on Oprah a few years ago, etc. I can see why people would be…hesitant about him. I get it.
But I also know that the dude gives a shit about the movies he’s in and produces. Especially in the past couple of decades. I admire that. So on that basis alone, I don’t shy away from watching the fuck out of those movies. Some are better than others. Some are forgettable. Some are way better than they have any goddamn right to be.
Back to the initial point: I rewatched Edge of Tomorrow. The Groundhog Day of alien invasion war films. Once you get past the initial set up of how he ends up on the front lines of the war, the movie really comes together. I couldn’t stop laughing at the fact that the first five minutes that needed to set up how this all happened was the most inexplicable and least likely thing to happen in a movie that not only involves aliens crashing to Earth and a full on human alliance pulls together to the fight them, but also involves relative time travel. He is a public relations officer sent to this war’s equivalent of D-Day just fucking because. And when he’s like, “You know I’m basically an ad exec, right?” they knock him the fuck out and tell his new commanding officer that he’s not the person they’ve all been watching on TV lately telling everyone that the war is going just fine and when he tries to explain his situation to ignore him, because he’s probably lying about it. Fucking why? None of that makes sense, but you get over it pretty quickly when Bill Paxton shows up. (Quick side note: Twister is also on the highly recommended list of movies that are streaming that you should turn your brain off and relax to. My favorite moment is when the storm chasing crew are eating lunch and goofing on what an F4 tornado can do and Jami Gertz is trying to get a handle on the scale of things, so she asks if there is an F5. They all turn to her and basically ask her why she hates Jesus. “How fucking dare you ask if there is something stronger than the thing we were just kidding about? Your purely logical question that absolutely needed clarification is the most offensive thing I have ever heard, ma’am!” But also results in the beautifully delivered line: “Finger of god.”) RIP Bill Paxton. You were a real one and your game, sir…will never be over.
Edge of Tomorrow feels like it is going to veer real hard into repetitive territory, but as it chugs along, they find interesting and fun, and even touching, ways to reveal just how many times he has lived through these days over and over again. It IS a bit long. By the time the third act hits, you are like, “Oh, this is why they kept showing us all of those people in the unit he isn’t really in. Okay.” At that point, you are pretty ready to wrap it up. We get it, Cage loves Rita. The likelihood of a happy ending is slim, but it’s to save the world. Yes, yes. Let’s go. And the movie still does try to deliver a happy ending. Honestly, the more I think about it, the more I think I would like the movie more if there were some heavier repercussions. Which is a weird thing to say about a movie in which it seems like Europe is just straight fucked by this alien invasion, but I think you would understand once you’ve seen it. While I don’t need every movie’s ending to skew as dark as The Mist (holy shit), I do love me some films that make characters’ sacrifices fucking mean something.
In all of the lead up to me watching the movie again, I was reminded that they tried to rebrand the movie for DVD release. I guess they weren’t happy with the box office and thought the name wasn’t punchy enough. So I have compiled a list of titles that were used, going to be used, or, for the most part, I would love to see used for future releases. Especially since there have been talks of a sequel happening and it would be called Live, Die, Repeat, Repeat…which makes me just want to cut to the die part and leave it as is.
Edge of Tomorrow (2014)
- Live, Die, Repeat: Edge of Tomorrow (DVD release title)
- Live, Die, Repeat (what they ended up using when the above title was deemed way too fucking much)
- We Mortals Are (working title that is worse than Edge of Tomorrow)
- All You Need Is Kill (another working title and what it was called in Japan, and also a title that totally fucks)
- Warhog Day
- Mission: Repossible
- Cruise Control
- Not Again!
- Full Metal Repackage
- Starship Loopers
- Apocalypse Then and Now
- You Only Live Twice Except For In This Movie
- Live and Let Die and Live Some More
- Tomorrow Always Dies
- Die Another Couple of Days
- Plenty of Time to Die
Sorry for steering so hard in Bond territory near the end. They just seemed appropriate.
What do you all think about Tom Cruise and Tom Cruise movies? Any other title suggestions for this movie? Shoot them on over to ElectricDraculaInquiries@gmail.com
Things are tough right now. Donate where you can. Wear a mask. Do what you can to make the world a better and safer place, but don’t forget to take some time for yourself to relax and watch a movie that just makes you forget about how bad shit can be.