Featuring one hell of a main story, The Final Cut is a strange movie. It’s most definitely a science fiction movie but it feels more like a regular drama. I feel like someone came up with a brilliant idea and failed to develop it properly. Still, stellar performance by Robin Williams and the sheer thought-provoking power of the basic concepts explored here warrant a viewing. This is also an opportunity to see Williams in a different type of movie. Although he was in his fair share of science fiction movies like Artificial Intelligence and Bicentennial Man, this is a much darker affair. What Dreams May Come or One Hour Photo darker.
This cult of death thing that we have carried over the centuries, forced by religion, has reached its full potential here. This was the strongest motive in the movie, for me at least. It made me think are we going to be really doing things like this in the future? Unfortunately, the more likely answer is yes, but this is that rich tapestry of life that we all live in. If all this sounds a bit boring to you and you’re expecting something really engaging, better skip this one. I recommend you check out Strange Days or Gattaca, dealing with similar issues but in a much more entertaining way.
Welcome to the world of tomorrow! This is a place where Zoe implants are commonplace. They record a person’s life and those recordings are then spliced into a piece of memorabilia for the family. Alan Hakman (Hack-Man more like it) is a cutter who creates these compilations. So far, he has found his job to be quite nice but his next job will change all that.
I just love movies that question the basic norms of society and The Final Cut is one of them. I know it feels like it’s coming at it from a wrong position but it’s still talking about some things we usually avoid. Things like death and what it means to live a good life. Additionally, we have the whole surveillance angle. In a world that’s increasingly covered with all types of recording devices, it’s easy to imagine a society where people willingly record their lives. If that seems a bit far-fetched just add a little prestige or monetary incentive and you’ll see how it’s very plausible.
Visually, The Final Cut has an almost steampunk vibe. Everything is encased in wood and seems kind of weathered. So, I like the decision to go the other way instead of choosing the same style as every other science fiction movie. As you might have guessed, the cinematography, production values, and everything else were pretty decent. Again, that slow pacing rears its ugly head here but, as always, you can use that time to ponder life’s great questions.
Director: Omar Naim
Writer: Omar Naim
Cast: Robin Williams, Mira Sorvino, James Caviezel, Brendan Fletcher, Christopher Britton
Fun Facts: The Zoe implant records all visual experiences in a person’s life. In Greek, Zoe means “life”.