Jumper is a hipster sci-fi flick that stars Hayden Christensen and Samuel L. Jackson, with the actor's worst set of hair since Unbreakable or maybe even -- gulp -- The Great White Hype. We're supposed to find the teleportation in the movie all shades of cool. We're supposed to take Hayden Christensen seriously as an actor. We're supposed to "ooh" and "ahh" at the scope of the film as depicted in the teaser and most recent trailer. But here's the scary part...
I do find the teleportation scenes kind of cool. I am taking Hayden Christensen seriously (after Sith all was forgiven). And I'm doing my fair share of ooh and ahh-ing, thank you very much.
For some reason, Jumper strikes me as the type of movie I normally would dread to see: a big, dumb popcorn flick high on potential and low on delivery. There are scores of movies every year that have an interesting premise but go nowhere with it; they don't even manage to really entertain because they end up stale as Styrofoam. I've learned to sniff these movies out after getting burned time and time again.
But Jumper looks like it might have the goods. That teaser trailer sold me and before I watched it, I knew virtually nothing about the film. I was somewhat surprised by what I saw and more than a little suspicious thinking, "Wait, this has to be a mistake. This movie is going to be terrible ... right?" Lo and behold I find out the movie is directed by Doug Liman. Liman is the guy who made Swingers, Go, and The Bourne Identity. He also did Mr. and Mrs. Smith, which I only half-liked; but that's a pretty darn good track record.
Also, Mr. Rowdy Burns himself, Michael Rooker makes an appearance in this movie. See? He isn't dead! Add to this that David S. Goyer (Batman Begins) wrote the script and Jim Uhls (Fight Club) did a rewrite, and I'm doing the happy dance. (If I can veer a bit off topic for second... I read something odd though: Eminem reportedly turned down an offer to star. Can you see that? Can anyone see that? And how did he turn it down?)
The thing I really like about what I see from this movie so far is that Christensen's character does the sort of things real people would do if they really did have the power to teleport. What was Nightcrawler doing in the White House trying to assassinate the president in X2? Buddy... chillax! Break out the beach chair and take in some sun by the pyramids in Giza. Work a tan, why don't ya? Surf some Aussie or Hawaiian waters. Sneak into a bank or two. Take a new Mercedes for a spin.. live it up man!
Jumper hops (it's never too early for some punditry!) into theaters February 14th.
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Dre writes three times a week for Film.com. Email him!