After the surprise success of District 9, director Neill Blomkamp seemed at the top of his game. So, the wise move was to bust out his big guns, which was going bigger in terms of scale, budget, and size.
His next project hooked on the backs of acting superstars Matt Damon (The Bourne Identity, Ocean's Eleven, The Informant!) and Jodie Foster (The Silence of the Lambs, Panic Room) and launched into the stars, under the name of Elysium.
When me and my dad saw the first trailer, we were immediately hooked.
It then came out, and...we both took a side.
Dad said it was an overly-violent, shaky, and poorly done mess, while I said it was an action-packed, thrilling, and well-acted (for the most part) powerhouse.
Enough with the background though, time for the story.
In the year 2154, Earth has become a desolate hell-hole where people get sick and/or die almost every day, while the wealthy people populate a space utopia dubbed Elysium, which is, in essence, paradise with regenerative beds (to an extent, they don't bring back the dead.) that heal any major condition. Yes, even cancer. Alzheimer's be damned.
After an incident involving radiation over-exposure, Max de Costa (Matt Damon) has only five days to get to Elysium and not only cure himself, but also the rest of mankind, who has become heavily desperate to get the sick off Earth and healed of their sickness. There's only one problem, Elysium doesn't want anything to do with Earth, and will literally annihilate them on sight. So, Max, Spider (Wagner Moura), and his allies have to find a way to get up there before Max dies.
The acting from most of its cast is nothing short of stellar. Damon, given his expectations with the Bourne series and most of Steven Soderbergh's films, is once again spectacular. He gives off a necessary amount of grit and badass likability to his character that you know to root for him getting cured.
Jodie Foster, however, only works if she isn't using her unfortunately odd accent to speak, which is 90% of the film with her in it. She's the weak link in the entire cast, and, given her previous performances, is disappointing.
Sharlto Copley makes up for that as Agent Kruger, a mercenary hired by Delacourt (Jodie Foster) to stop Max and his allies in getting to Elysium. Not only is his performance gleefully over-the-top, he pretty much makes the film with the fact that he's the best part. Every scene he was in had me chuckle at every awesome line he delivered, or had me in awe at how powerful his character is.
In the end, the critics and audience are wrong yet again. I do see where they come from, but that still didn't stop me from liking. I just think it's a matter of preference, but, whatever yours is, check this one out. You won't be disappointed.