Posted on 06 April 2011.
Jake Gyllenhaal, Michelle Monaghan, Vera Farmiga, & Jeffrey Wright bring their characters to life with their brilliant acting in “Source Code.” Directed by Duncan Jones, “Source Code” is an action/mystery/romance film mixed to perfection. “Source Code” holds it’s audience on the edge of their seats with it’s special effects & it’s morals teach them very valuable lessons that are uncommon for this film’s genre. A wild ride between action, puzzlement, & emotion, “Source Code” has everything in store to entertain it’s viewers.
When Captain Colter Stevens (Jake Gyllenhaal) awakens on a Chicago commuter train in another man’s body, he is filled with confusion & the need to figure out what exactly is going on. After an explosion on the train, Captain Colter Stevens regains consciousness in a containment vessel & learns he is being sent back into the memory of one of the passengers that died onboard the train by the use of the source code. His mission: to find the terrorist behind the train bombing to prevent a future bombing in the present reality. Interacting with passengers, exploring the train, & struggling with his own personal issues – Captain Colter Stevens has entered a time fleeting paradox in order to save the world. Captain Colter Stevens must keep reliving the eight minute experience onboard the train until he can identify the terrorist, but his mission begins to complicate with the secrecy of Colleen Goodwin (Vera Farmiga) & Dr. Rutledge (Jeffrey Wright) (those in charge of the source code), his romance for a passenger onboard the commuter train named Christina Warren (Michelle Managhan), & his own conscience.
One of the most significant advancements in film is in the area of special effects. Without special effects, attempts at creating explosions, time-traveling sequences, & the like would all fail to reflect a realistic scenario. However, it is as equally easy to ruin a film with the advancements made in special effects; too much of anything is a bad thing! With too much use of special effects, a film is just screaming to attract viewers, but in reality, it turns their viewers away. Special effects are abundant in “Source Code,” but in not one instance are they overdone. From the repeated explosions on the train to Captain Colter Stevens’s body & source code entry, all the special effects used in “Source Code” are appropriate & attractive to viewers. Unfortunately, one special effect did not work out as well as planned, yet did not fail too terribly: the scene when time stops on the train & the passengers are shown frozen in time. The frozen passengers look like wax-figures or mannequins. Whether or not the aforementioned were what was used for this scene, it should have been executed better & made to look more realistic. Regardless, it is a minor failure.
Morals are present in every story. Whether they be applicable to realistic events or touch the audience varies, but many that do such are generally not presented in action films. Yes, the hero saves the day & gets the girl, villains will be punished, & many other stereotypical morals are almost always present in the action genre, including “Source Code,” but those are some of the most played out morals &, quite frankly, are not always true. The other morals held within the action of “Source Code” are very uncommon for the action genre & are presented in a new perspective that allows the audience to be touched. Tie up all loose ends, do what is selfless & righteous, & make everyone happy, even if for just a moment – these are the invaluable morals presented within “Source Code.” Beautiful morals to see presented so well in an action film, Gyllenhaal, Monaghan, & Farmiga present these morals with their wonderful acting. For an action film (especially one not of a series with a beloved character throughout) to produce tears & stick to the genre takes talent, not only from the actors & actresses, but from all those involved in creating & producing the film.
With the talent of Jake Gyllenhaal, Michelle Monaghan, Vera Farmiga, & Jeffrey Wright as well as director Duncan Jones, “Source Code” is a story brought to life that entertains it’s viewers with it’s use of special effects & teaches it’s viewers invaluable morals. “Source Code” is an action/mystery/romance film in which the genres all weave together to create a brilliant film & source of entertainment. “Source Code’s” action, mystery, & romance will leave it’s viewers glad they watched it.