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Film Review: Vanilla Sky

Pie in the sky or plain brilliant?

Millionaire bad boy David Aames (Tom Cruise) has it all, wealth, woman, good looks, and his fathers` publishing company. He is riding high, when he falls in love with an ordinary girl Sofia (Penelope Cruz) whom he meets at a party, she makes him question the way he lives his life and the next day he sets off vowing to be a better person.

Tom Cruise in Vanilla Sky Unfortunately his earlier hedonistic ways are catching up with him, the board of his company want to remove him, and his sometime girlfriend (Cameron Diaz) is sinisterly jealous of his new friend. From here, things get very complicated, the story is told in a series of flash backs, as Aames relays events to a prison psychologist, (Kurt Russell). What we know is something terrible has happened, then like an onion the layers are peeled away until all is revealed, or alternatively, we remain with nothing in our hands, and crying in frustration!

Based on the Spanish film ?Abre los Ojos?, Vanilla sky is a complex thriller, using beautiful camera work, and dream sequences to tell its story. From Fellini to Lynch and beyond filmmakers have played games with our conceptions of reality, dreams, and the sub-conscious. Now with Tom Cruise and director Cameron Crowe we have a mainstream Hollywood movie that is brave enough to push out these boundaries of reality. The downside to this is that for a thriller, tension is thin on the ground, with Cruises` character being so unpleasant we have little sympathy for his predicament. The film will not please all Cruise fans being more David Lynch than Jerry Maguire. However, the best thing to do is, overlook the flaws and enjoy a brave and thought provoking film. Then get the original on video.

Kevin Smith

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