Review – Jumper (2008)

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jumper-58a5b6621a875Welcome to Jamie Bell Week: Day 2. This actually may be the first thing I’ve seen him in, actually. I remember being psyched to see this in theater, which I did. There was a YouTube show, before there were YouTube shows, called LonelyGirl15 which chronicled the life of a girl randomly vlogging about her own life – but the more you watched it, the  more you learned about this cult that her family is a part of, and it got edgier and edgier, and more thrilling as it went on. Now, it tried to do its own little spinoff, and instead of a girl, it was a guy that was talking about the existence of teleportation…but it was really just advertisement for this movie, and everyone knew it. So that didn’t last long. Here’s a list of videos related to Jumper. So what is it even about, you ask? Well, let me tell ya.

Jumper is about teleportation. A few people, called jumpers, have the ability to teleport anywhere on the face of the planet and do whatever they want. It’s the life, really. Imagine having access to every safe of every bank on the planet. We’ll just say you’d never have to work again, and for David Rice (Hayden Christensen), he’s living said life. That is until a number of jumper hunters, led by Roland (Samuel L. Jackson) find themselves hot on David’s trail.

I remember this movie as mostly just being fun, and fun is what it is, but it does fall pretty weak when we talk about the writing. There isn’t really a goal as to what’s going on here. These jumpers just use their powers to do whatever they want without any real direction. The only characters in the film that have a goal are the jumper hunters, which feels a little imbalanced, to be honest. That being said, as far as teleportation goes in a film, I do consider this to be one of the best approaches I’ve seen for it. It looks pretty cool, and it’s not just someone teleporting, the environment around these people are also affected in a big way. In general, I’ll say this…the movie had great potential, it just didn’t meet that potential in the end.

Needless to say, that’s my first impression, but it matters not in the big picture. Let’s break the film down and get down to the nitty-gritty. How’s that sound? Alright? Cool.

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PEOPLE SCORE – 6/10
Acting – 1|Characters – 1|Casting – 2|Importance – 1|Chemistry – 1

So, the people category mostly got a mix-mash score. Where did it go right? Well, I think the casting, in general, was all pretty great, but everything else really didn’t stand out very well. The acting was mediocre, the characters aren’t super memorable, none of the good guys really add to the plot, as they are going around aimlessly. Only the bad guys have a reason to be there and further the story. As for chemistry…it wasn’t terrible chemistry, but at the same time, chemistry really wasn’t something the movie focused on very much.

WRITING SCORE – 6/10
Dialogue – 1|Balanced – 1|Story – 0|Originality – 2|Interesting – 2

Same thing with the writing category, another mix-mash. Where did it go right? Well, I’d say that it was a very interesting and original tale with tons of potential, but that’s about it. The dialogue was forgettable, there’s so much going on in this movie for no apparent reason that I can’t really say it’s super balanced, and there just isn’t any real story. There’s no reason for any of it to be happening, really. It just…does…because it can…which in my book is weak.

BTS SCORE – 9/10
Visuals – 2|Directing – 2|Editing – 2|Advertisement – 2|Music – 1

Behind-the-scenes is the first category to really get a good score. The only problem I saw here was the music, which wasn’t bad, it just didn’t stand out. The visuals were pretty awesome, especially with any of the scenes where they teleport. The director was able to take a movie void of character motive, and still tell a story as he wanted to, which is pretty impressive. The editing was especially amazing during those montages of teleporting to all different locations throughout the world feeling like one smooth scene, that’s pretty fantastic. Finally, I also consider this as-advertised.

NARRATIVE ARC SCORE – 9/10
Introduction – 2|Inciting Incident – 2|Obstacles – 2|Climax – 2|Falling Action – 1

The narrative arc category also got a very high score because it follows a very solid structure. We are introduced to David Rice and we get some insight as to how he came across using this gift. We’re also introduced to how he uses it later in life, which is mostly just for fun. He will teleport inches just to get a remote control for the TV. The inciting incident comes around when we meet Samuel L. Jackson’s character, which is one scary dude out to kill the jumpers because only God should have the ability to be at all places all the time. So, the obstacles really just come down to escaping the scary hunters, and the falling action left us wondering, so it wasn’t the best, just okay.

ENTERTAINMENT SCORE – 6/10
Rewatchability – 1|Fun – 2|Impulse/Buy – 1|Impulse/Talk – 0|Sucks Audience IN – 2

Next up is the entertainment category, which is our third mix-mash score. Where did it go right? Well off the bat, I’d say it is a very fun movie that just sucks you in and keeps you there, but its rewatchability factor isn’t the highest because you have no desire to see it again right away, but you still would rewatch it at a later point. You also might want to buy it…that is…if you found a cheap copy. But you have no impulse to really discuss it. There’s just not much to discuss about it!

TOTAL SPECIAL – 45/50
Action – 10|Hayden Christensen – 10|Jamie Bell – 5|Teleportation – 10|Memory – 10

Now for the questions I wrote before watching it for the second time. First of all, does it hold up well based off of how I remember it? It does, actually, very well. How about the action in it, is that any good? The action is better than most action films because it takes place all over the world. In terms of Hayden Christensen, is this a movie you’d mention? Honestly, it definitely is. Apart from Star Wars being his main movies, I also enjoyed him in this and especially Awake. What about Jamie Bell? This is his week after all. Well, Jamie Bell was good, but he shouldn’t have been placed as the second name in the credits. He’s more of a third important character that’s not always there. But Christensen and Bilson are there the whole time…for the most part. Finally, how is it as a teleportation film? Awesome. The use of teleportation was the most unique I’ve ever seen, and I still believe the use of teleportation was probably the best here than anywhere else.

Rating – 81/100

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