If you compare "Top Gun"-era Tom Cruise to the "Oblivion"-era Tom Cruise, there are surprisingly few physical differences. But Cruise says that the similarities between his 24-year-old self and his 50-year-old self run more than skin deep.
The actor told MTV News' Josh Horowitz on Wednesday that his latest project, a science-fiction odyssey directed by Joe Kosinski ("TRON: Legacy"), brought out the kid in him — as all of his movies do.
"That's kind of where I start anyway," Cruise said. "I'm a fan of movies, and when you look at 'Oblivion,' it has the bubble ship, the bubble bike, we're shooting in Iceland and the mountains of California, and the story is so cool."
In "Oblivion," Cruise plays Jack Harper, an astronaut who begins to question his responsibilities after being plagued by recurrent dreams of a mysterious woman (Olga Kurylenko). He explained that the film is full of great, exciting surprises that will keep audiences guessing right up until the end. "It twists all of the way up to the final frame," he said.
"It's the kind of movie you're going to want to see again, and every piece is there. But Joe's aesthetic is stuff I've never seen before. So it is that teenage kid, going, that bubble ship — who doesn't want that bubble ship?"
Although he previously made two science-fiction films with Steven Spielberg, "Minority Report" and "War of the Worlds," Cruise said that the release of "Oblivion" was symbolic of the genre reconnecting with the elements that made him love it in the first place. "I love this genre, and it is a very exciting time," Cruise explained. "Because we went through a period where it was visual effects, visual effects, but now we're getting back to story.
"We're getting back to real storytelling, and applying the visual effects to storytelling," he continued. "And I love delivering for an audience what has the most impact and is as entertaining as possible. And I find sci-fi gives us that obvious world-creation."
"Oblivion" opens in theaters nationwide April 19, 2013.