Your thoughts on Equilibrium (spoilers)

Okay, so I watched this movie a while back, and after hearing so much hype about how cool it was, found it to be incredibly lacking. I liked the concept of the gun kata, and the basic premise of the story was nice, but overall, it just didn’t work for me.
From what I could tell, Prosium was supposed to turn humans into robots for the most part (imagine a world full of people acting like Data from Star Trek). The main character’s supposed to be the best at what he does (find “sense offenders” and execute them), but he seems pretty ignorant to the fact that his new partner is fueled by ambition, probably the biggest emotion that prosium is supposed to eliminate.
Again, some really interesting fight scenes, and an interesting concept, but I felt it was rather poorly executed. The plot was pretty interesting, but I found the characters didn’t act nearly as robotic or unemotional as they were meant to, and when that’s the point of the flick, it just falls flat. Anyone else have any thoughts?

i went to the cinema to see it. i liked it. not enough to buy it on DVD yet, but the fight scenes were certainly well done. better than say, matrix reloadeds CGI bollocks.
i wasnt expecting an acting masterclass and i didnt get one. it ticked along nicely enough. 3 stars out of 5.

Elvis, you seem to have made the same mistake that quite a few others have wrt this movie: they assume that Prozium wipes out all emotions, but the movie never says this. It is made very clear several times that what the drug does is wipe out the extreme highs and lows of emotion. It makes people boring but not robotic. Ambition wouldn’t be wiped out, but megalomania would, for instance. Fondness wouldn’t be wiped out, but infatuation and passion would.
That’s beside the point however, as I see the movie as a treatise on the failure of the various utopian systems tried on Earth. Notice that the reason things start falling apart isn’t the rebellion: it’s the fact that the leadership of the Tetragrammaton ISN’T FOLLOWING THEIR OWN RULES. No utopian system (eg Communism, Libertarianism, etc) can work because humans are corruptible.
I also like the subversive nature of the ending. The rebels win, the bad guys are killed and everyone lives happily ever after…or do they? The gleam in Christian Bale’s eye at the end promises a hint that the new order could be just as oppressive and flawed as the old. Very cool ending.

It meant well. Clearly it aspired to be the thinking man’s action movie, which is a good thing. But it ended up feeling like a Cliff’s Notes version of Farenheit 451 (and every other dystopian sf novel ever written) with some exxtreme Matrix style action thrown in. And there was lots of very clumsy exposition.

I will say, though, that the scene where Our Hero goes into a rage and slaughters a bunch of cops because they threatened his poor widdle puppy dog was one of the most unintentionally hilarious scenes I’ve seen in years! I thought maybe the director was going to go ahead and make the ironic point that yes, maybe emotions are dangerous. But no, it seems we were meant to take it perfectly straight.

On the contrary, if you watch the end of the movie again, I think it does make the point, subtly, that the reign of the raging emotions will be just as dangerous and oppressive as that of the Tetragrammaton.

I really like this movie. It was over the top at times, but I thought it worked, in general. At the final fight sequence was amazing. Especially where

Bale slices his partner’s face off.

Heh heh heh.

This came as a surprise to me. Either Bale had a good idea what was going on from the begining or he was holding back during the sparing match when he was training.

I also thought that the drug was supposed to eliminate all emotion, although that doesn’t explain what good (for their society) comes from destroying the Mona Lisa.

High ideals went into the concept, but it came off as ham handed.

I thought the movie was way over-the-top. I’m sorry, but I won’t take seriously a movie where black-clad gestapo troops march around the streets and execute people for listening to some Ludwig van.

I guess what separates it from other (better) oppressive-regime dystopias like 1984 or Brave New World (or, moviewise, Demolition Man or Brazil) is that those books & movies really convey how those governments could’ve come into place, and how people could’ve gotten along with it.

And, because I feel like complaining, what was up with those gun katas? I understand that they mostly just wanted a reason to let Bale fight like Keanu, but c’mon… shouldn’t he be easier to hit if he moves according to a predefined pattern when he’s fighting? And since the gun katas apparently allow him to dodge bullets, why do they keep trying to shoot him? I would’ve let him try to dodge a room soaked with napalm, personally. :smiley:

The director explains in the commentary explains that Christian Bale’s character is much more efficient in the ending sequences because he had reverted to his old self. His fear was put in check and a cold desire for revenge took over. In the absence of distractions Taye was no match for him -he is the best, after all.

The idea is that art inspires emotions. But I’d agree this is handled sloppily. For example, the architecture and decorative swords the Grammatons have -which I guess explains why they cover up their windows.

It’s like they say, gunkata is apparently the result of exhaustive testing on what pattern an average gunman will follow. We can assume that it’s actually very deep in how much discipline and mathematical precision it demands in order to account for various situations. I don’t think this would make them easier to hit- they are not following predefined patterns, because there are a number of maneuvers at their disposal.

It’s a pity we didn’t get to see more of gunkata in action -the movie’s budget and shooting time didn’t allow for it.

As you can discern from this post, I am a BIG FAN of this movie.

I just didn’t buy it. Like Dryga and Wumpus said, it tried, and it meant well, but it simply couldn’t sell me that humanity would give up its emotions.

Or that any of the Grammatons had. The Partner has way too emotional, even if emotions were merely dulled, not destroyed.

A worthy, but failed attempt at the Matrix’s pseudo-philosophy and action.

Gun katas were cool, however.

That’s kind of the point, though. Humanity cannot give up its emotions, so everyone takes prozium to suppress them - and even that isn’t a perfect solution. The upper echelons are corrupt; they collect art and music and they obviously don’t take prozium. It’s an analogue to communism, which is also a perfect system - but only so long as you have perfect people.

I found the gun kata part to be one of the worst parts of the movie. Seeing them flail their arms around like the way a dancer in “Lord of the Dance” flails their legs around made me laugh. They looked like poseurs to me. I half expected them to cross their arms after a gun fight and give me the gangsta stare.

See, with the fact that every soldier, and especially Christian Bale’s character, were shown up to be completely emotionless (he stood by while his wife was sentenced to be burned alive and “Didn’t feel anything”) gave me the impression that prosium was meant to eliminate emotion. I don’t recall any specific examples of them saying it’s just supposed to curve the main ones, but the beginning did mention it’s developement to stop those that would lead men to wage wars, of which, as far as I know, are pride and ambition. Tye’s character was full of ambition, and in the beginning, Father’s giving a big huge speach designed to instil pride in the people for their great accomplishment as a society.

If it was simply meant to curb serious emotions, why was the little kid all gung ho about reporting the little bugger who was crying in his class? Crying isn’t always the sign of super emotion.

How the hell didn’t he recognize the fact his daughter wasn’t on the drug? Her fiddling with her cereal was the most blattant show of non-conformity and he just didn’t think twice about it.

And in a society where emotions aren’t important, why keep up the institution of marriage? Family is no longer needed for emotional support, so why aren’t children just born in tubes and raised in school? Why bother with the constructs of family at all if not for the purpose of having a plot device so the main character can finally “feel”.

And that super logic brain of his, how the hell did he equate that saving six sense offenders was worth the lives of what, eight police officers?

I got the main point that perfect societies don’t work because the rulers are going to be corrupted by power, but the movie just didn’t work it.

I saw it tonight and really enjoyed it, just as a stylish action movie based as much on Fahrenheit 451 and Brave New World as The Matrix.

Gunkata was too cool, especially the fantastic fight scenes at the end.

Everyone dressed like Nazi fetish dentists, though.

I hated this movie. Hated, hated, Roger-Ebert-on-North hated this movie. It’s as if the makers were trying to win a bet that they could make a science fiction movie without a single original idea, yet stuff it with so many obvious (there was not a single point in the movie where I did not know exactly what the next scene would hold) yet ridiculous plot twists so as to dispel any remnant of suspension of disbelief. The dialogue was inane, the world was unbelievable, the characters were one-dimensional at best, and Christian Bale managed to consolodate my distaste for him to such a degree that I will never see another film with his pinched little face in it, Batman or not. And it was so damn SLOW.

Plus, it just didn’t make sense:

  • I know something or another about guns, and I can tell you, GunKata would be about as effective in combat as clog-dancing.

  • Who hides a secret lair underneath a glass sidewalk?

  • Why was everybody else summerly executed, yet what’s-her-face got to whine in Bale’s face for about a week before she was sent to the Crispifier?

  • If the only alternative to totalitarianism is 1930s-era English Kitch, then no thanks. I’ll take my drugs.

  • You know, the fights would be a whole lot more impressive if those soldiers’ fighting skills didn’t make Stormtroopers look like Sardaukar.

  • And the ultimate question - why, in a nearly entirely British cast, was only Sean Bean allowed to speak with a British accent?

In short, bleh. Reason #157 why cancelling MST3000 was the tragedy of or times.

P.S. - If you want a truly original take on thge subject, read Stephen R. Donaldson’s short story “Mythological Beast” from Daughter of Regals. You won’t regret it.

That would be because the Clerics were trying to extract information from her - at Bale’s request, IIRC.

The film may have made more sense if you hadn’t been so busy hating it.

Then why didn’t anyone interrogate her? All Bale did was sit across the table from hem and make goo-goo eyes in front of a closed circuit camera. All these scenes did was show that for a lead “cleric”, he had the IQ and covert skills of a roast beef sandwich,

And one more question - how the hell did he manage to sneak two huge pistols in to an interview with Big Bro… sorry, “Father”?

Because he’s just that damn good?

I did like the fact that, in all that action, he ended up receiving only one injury, and to be honest, I don’t even recall where he got it.

I just figured they were waiting to executer her so they could interrogate her as well, but I also found his interrogation methods rather piss poor. Especially with his knowledge that he was being watched and recorded, his decision to not even fake taking prosium was just proof of how little intelligence this guy had.

I liked it, though I haven’t watched the very ending yet (I had to go to work right after the woman gets incinerated). It’s a flawed film, but enjoyable.

I had one question - what was the point of those things that popped out of the grip of his gun before he beat those cops to death? My first assumption was that it was some kind of stun-gun type incapacitation device, but apparently it was not. I’m assuming now that they were just there to accentuate the damage done by pistol-whipping people, but I’m not sure.

Yeah, I just took them as extra little battle bits. They seemed to help smash open helmuts, so maybe they were just there to add a bit more than blunt trauma to the victims.
Or just to look cool. Who knows?