Starring: Dennis Quaid, Matthew Fox, Forest Whittaker
Director: Pete Travis
Running Time: 90 mins
Vantage Point is an American film about the chaos that unfolds after the President of the USA is shot at an anti-terrorism summit, shown from the perspectives of different people who witnessed the event.
A generic and simple enough action thriller on the surface, we can’t fault Vantage Point for trying something a bit different, even if it ultimately goes a little too far. A high-concept blockbuster that lacks the fresh intensity it sets out to deliver, Vantage Point is a generally disappointing watch, almost struggling from its lack of familiar, turn-your-brain-off action fare.
Again, it’s always good to see filmmakers trying something new when it comes to genres as tried and tested as this. The premise is simple, the President is shot at a summit, and we relive the same event a handful of times, shown from the perspectives of different characters on the scene.
That’s the film’s high concept, but it’s a premise that doesn’t exactly work out in exhilarating fashion. Beyond the opening sequence, which features a good shock factor, the replaying of the same event again and again is something which becomes really tiresome.
That wouldn’t be a problem if the revelations we see from different characters were more exciting or more shocking, but the story is fairly monotone throughout, with each twist never really sticking the landing in particularly thrilling style.
As a result, you spend too little time with a collection of poorly-interweaved characters that feel like they need more time and more development to be genuinely interesting. The action itself is fine, but it also loses its fun factor as we see the same scenario repeated time and time again, only from different camera angles.
In short, Vantage Point is a passable film that unfortunately misses the mark with its original concept. Though it deserves credit for trying, the film’s use of the same event again and again makes for a rather dull watch, lacking the depth or thrill factor to turn its interweaving story into an edge-of-your-seat rollercoaster. So, that’s why I’m giving it a 6.8 overall.