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STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

POSTER ART
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FILM DETAILS
Certificate
TBC
Cast
Shia LaBeouf
Michelle Monaghan
Rosario Dawson
Billy Bob Thornton
Michael Chiklis.
Directors
D J Caruso.
Screenwriters
Hillary Seitz
Travis Adam Wright
John Glenn
Dan McDermott.
Running Time
TBC minutes

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Eagle Eye
Big Brother is watching you. Or someone is, anyway


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Plot
Following the death of his twin brother, Jerry Shaw (LaBeouf) is framed as a terrorist. Arrested by the FBI, he is sprung by a female caller and coerced, along with a single mum (Monaghan), into going on a dangerous mission.


Review
Eagle Eye
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Round two, then, of D.J. Caruso’s updating of Hitchcock classics using modern gadgetry, contemporary paranoia and Shia LaBeouf in for James Stewart/Cary Grant. After 2007’s entertaining Rear Window reboot Disturbia, Eagle Eye is North By Northwest 2.0., with an EveryShia accused of a crime he didn’t commit, forced to go on the lam with a beautiful gal (M:I-III’s Michelle Monaghan), building to a big climax at an American landmark. The result is a hugely enjoyable slice of nifty nonsense that revels in the pleasures of its plotting, and cleverly plays on everyday fears we all share: the fear of invasive technology, of terrorist cells, and of having William Sadler as your dad.

As with 99.9 per cent of all thrillers, the set-up is more satisfying than its resolution. Trading on LaBeouf’s eminently likable mix of the charming and the resentful, his Jerry Shaw is a photocopy slave, good with the laydeez but estranged from his pop (Sadler). He is pulled into a malevolent version of Steve Martin’s L. A. Story, as out-of-control electronic signs, traffic lights changing at will and TV screens in McDonald’s mysteriously coerce and direct both him and Monaghan’s single mother on a wild goose chase with Billy Bob Thornton’s FBI blowhard in hot pursuit. This is where the movie is most fun, with the anonymous woman on the end of the line turning the couple into unlikely hold-up artists, Japanese tourists and airport security crashers. And when the story delivers the pair into an open plain, it seems ripe for a Hitchcockian cropduster to hove into view. But Caruso has a different shock in store. He’s saving his ‘cropduster’ moment for later.  

Minus a lovely little scene in which Shaw quizzes Rachel about her kid, you get little in the way of characterisation. So it is a good job that Eagle Eye delivers practically non-stop action. After a summer packed with pixels, Caruso orchestrates his spills with a satisfying physicality; you feel that stuntfolks are mostly doing this stuff in front of your very eyes. From a bruising car chase down busy boulevards that segues into a breaker’s yard with cars being swung around like wrecking balls, to fisticuffs backstage at an airport, Caruso whisks his action into a spectacular but believable frenzy. He’s aided by his lead. LaBeouf doesn’t act running; he runs. Not playing second fiddle to huge machines or Indiana Jones, he finally earns his action-man stripes. 

To reveal much more is to quash Eagle Eye’s chief what-happens-next delight. Suffice it to say, we get half-baked sub-plots involving Rosario Dawson’s Air Force investigator exploring the death of Shaw’s twin — Shia with neater hair — and an under-utilised Michael Chiklis as a Secretary Of Defense at the centre of a military fuck-up. It is when all these plot-twists start to coalesce that Eagle Eye’s ludicrousness becomes ever more apparent — but it’s a good kind of ludicrous. Caruso keeps everything moving so quickly and with such panache that you will barely notice or care. If he doesn’t yet have the craft and clarity of a Cameron or his executive producer Spielberg, let alone Hitchcock, he’s getting there.


Verdict
A fun techno romp, mixing great bang for your buck with insights into the dangers of restricting civil liberties. Now, anyone for Shia killing blondes dressed as his dead mother?


Reviewed by Ian Freer

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Your Reviews

Average user rating for Eagle Eye
Empire Star Rating

Good action movie which delivers, but ultimately forgettable

How many action movies do I have to watch before I get sick and tired of saying the same thing? Movies like Eagle Eye (along with those things they call romantic comedies) are perfect for the one and a half ours they last, but offer nothing in the long run. Sure, Eagle Eye delivers. And in spades. In fact, Spielberg's presence is surely felt: action scenes are some of the best of the past few years, the pace is perfect and acting is suitably convincing. But the premise is something out of Enemy... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by djphilips at 16:15, 07 April 2010 | Report This Post


4 Stars, not a chance

Just got around to watching this, what a huge disappointment. Basically Hollywood by numbers, packed with predictable cliches and a story that although trades on reality is in face far removed from reality. Its like a poor Michael Bay movie, and if thats not an insult I dont know what is! Also, am I the only one who is starting to get a little tired of Shia LeBoef? Hes fast becoming a one trick pony who plays the same character in every movie. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by jay787 at 11:51, 20 October 2009 | Report This Post


4 Stars, not a chance

Just got around to watching this, what a huge disappointment. Basically Hollywood by numbers, packed with predictable cliches and a story that although trades on reality is in face far removed from reality. Its like a poor Michael Bay movie, and if thats not an insult I dont know what is! Also, am I the only one who is starting to get a little tired of Shia LeBoef? Hes fast becoming a one trick pony who plays the same character in every movie. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by jay787 at 11:51, 20 October 2009 | Report This Post


Rip off

Personally I think this film was a rip off of hundreds of greats. I guess oyu could say it's like the simpsons episode when a film competition comes to Springfield and Monty Burns attampts to win by stealing classic scenes from different movies and putting it into one. Evidence: the machine bares an extreme resemblance to HAL off 2001 and like my example they completely rip off the scene when they are planning to shut Hal down and Hal lip reads. In this the machine, Ariia, reads the character... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by raymondbros at 19:26, 01 September 2009 | Report This Post


Hi-octane Enemy of the State

But not as good. Some good scenes and entertaining enough, but it's still difficult to relate to the 'we know what you're doing at every moment of the day and from every angle' plot. Definately watchable but 4 stars is pushing it. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Bradlfc at 00:57, 28 June 2009 | Report This Post


What's wrong with the film?

This is the first review I read when EMPIRE gave 4 stars! Otherwise, Wikpedia and The Times of India both gave negative reviews- only two stars. Okay I admit that the ending was not upto the mark, but look at the concept of the story. Wasn't it new, apart from the technogy? It was my friend Danish who told me the to watch this film, as it a Spielberg-produced movie. All hats off to Spielberg and Danish!!! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by sumiebeg at 12:40, 11 May 2009 | Report This Post


Just wasnt as good as i guessed......

The hype that surrounded the trailer on its release was similar to the feeling one gets when you get taken on your first trip to Disneyland. The same, however cannot be said for the film. If i had to sum it up in one work it would have to be 'Disappointing'. The thing i am most amazed is what exactly does Monaghan bring to this production? nothing. The film could easily work without her. The trailer was all about fast action, camera pans, and a general lack in back storys and current situa... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Sulai at 14:19, 04 April 2009 | Report This Post


RE:

Ok, first things first.  Eagle Eye is RIDICULOUS!!  And not in a good way either...   From the first few seconds you realise that enjoying this film will require a major suspension of disbelief.  Which is fine for the first 20 minutes or so, as the premise is admittedly interesting and the OTT action scenes blitz your senses enough to paper over the cracks in the plot.  Unfortunately it doesn't take long before those cracks erode into vast canyons, and it's not so m... More

Posted by Vito_Andolini at 11:22, 25 March 2009 | Report This Post


better than what i thought it would be, i enjoyed it. yes, shia can be an annoying little brat, but his role in this suited my standards, the action was intense, and the alternative ending is absolute rubbish. just thought i would state that too. could have been better but what i seen was enough :) ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by mozzaman at 11:03, 22 March 2009 | Report This Post


Gripping And Thrilling.

I wanted to see Eagle Eye but due to the bad times and going off the cinema within two weeks, I had to wait until the DVD came out which I rented it out on Blu-Ray. It's a non-stop action movie with a gripping plot and a thrilling final moments. It's very well done, I enjoyed it so much that I wanted to see it again but only because I adore the lead star, Shia Labeouf. Retiuing from the excellent Disturbia with the same director, Labeouf is a brilliant actor and works his action clogs here as th... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by joanna likes films at 09:34, 08 March 2009 | Report This Post


One of the worst action films of 2008

4 stars is pushing it a bit, for a film that sux in every shape, form and dimension. Shia LaBeouf is his same annoying self as he was in Transformers and Crystal Skull but its the films ridiculous plot that had me cringing that Id spent 8 dollars admission for utter crap. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by WiseGuy101 at 09:11, 05 February 2009 | Report This Post


... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by SivlerArcade at 12:10, 01 February 2009 | Report This Post


4 stars?

from the trailers this film looked like a thrilling, chilling, gripping, action packed and intelligent film. Oh how wrong i was....this film was poor, weak and stupid. steven speilberg must really love shia labeouf and shia must be loving it as well being in transformers, indys son and now this. He is the new star on the hollywood circuit and is the only good thing about this poor poor film. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by THE DALTONATOR at 11:50, 28 January 2009 | Report This Post


RE: ARE U KIDDIN ME 4 STARS

I just couldn't get over Shia's very wet lip. It doesn't help that he can't act in my opinion.   This is the only film where I was bothered about going out and getting some nachos which for me is pretty big as I can't for the life of me understand why people go to the toilet during the film. ... More

Posted by Silvia_18 at 21:22, 05 January 2009 | Report This Post


RE: ARE U KIDDIN ME 4 STARS

L: nooneyuk If I could give this no stars i would. I walked out after 45 mins of a truly terrible film(only the second film i've ever walked out on, though the first was indy 4 but it was on a foolish second viewing) Just absolutely ridiculous, after the guy is zapped by the power cables that was me. and to find out it was a super computer just caped off a terrible plot to terrible on screen action. Possible the worst film I've ever sat down to watch. sp; The worst film you've ever see... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by rubadub at 13:32, 31 December 2008 | Report This Post


RE: 4 stars are you kidding

This review is exactly why I have since long ceased to think of  Empires reviews with anything but bemusement and distain. It is simply only good for reading movie news and that is all. Their reviews have long since went down the shitter. 4 Stars for a film that most people with an IQ above 85 would consider far fetched at best and total crud at worst. Just because it stars Shia Le Beef, who is Empires current flavour of the month (although God knows why), does not mean it should be o... More

Posted by C3 at 02:52, 31 December 2008 | Report This Post


RE: 4 stars are you kidding

SPOILERS BELOW L: Wilbert Very ordinary and it relied on too many coincidences. SPOILERS rently you can fall into liquid nitrogen and live!can also jam a metal crowbar into a computer and not get electrocuted even though massive sparks of electricity are jumping out. Ultimately the problem is that a computer that can control anything comes up with such a stupid plan. A bomb in a trumpet? Give me a break! he liquid nitrogen was in the 6 or so canisters that you see e... More

Posted by homersimpson_esq at 09:47, 06 November 2008 | Report This Post


RE: Eagle Eye

Decent enough, don't take it too seriously, and it's a fun ride.  I thought it was good that the computer had some justification for rebelling in a sense - given the unwarranted attack at the start.  Both main characters are good, and act as you'd believe them to throughout.   7/10 ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Paul2j at 15:29, 01 November 2008 | Report This Post


Eagle Eye

A pretty good and enjoyable action thriller. Totally far fetched of course but it's pretty much non-stop action throughout which is done very impressively. There's nothing too original in here - we've seen the big brother/terrorism/computers gone mad things before but here they're pretty well done. However, it's no Hitchcock and not a patch on the excellent Disturbia. And I can't help feeling that a more downbeat ending would have been better - but that's American films for you eh! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by trueborndjross at 09:07, 31 October 2008 | Report This Post


RE: Waste of Time & Money

Anyone else notice that the black fella who watches ARIAL is called Bowman? Neat little 2001 reference to go with the great big 2001 reference!  For what it's worth I thought it was enjoyable tosh. Sure, we've seen it before, but it was done well. ... More

Posted by homersimpson_esq at 16:39, 28 October 2008 | Report This Post


Waste of Time & Money

Four stars for this pile of junk? Sloppy story telling and a dire script make for a really woeful experience. Super-computers that can do anything they want when they want, no matter how far-fetched is just a poor excuse for a villain. As for the whole "consequences of computerised snooping", the whole idea has been exploited so much better in other films. Avoid this nonsense. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by RobertJohnBush at 06:11, 28 October 2008 | Report This Post


RE: Gash

i thought it was a really good film. i little wacky :p but hey, a little somethin different eh?   my rating: ]ty good, but the plot needed some work, as well as shias mostache. lol :p ... More

Posted by LiritLeBoursier at 01:00, 28 October 2008 | Report This Post


WASTED MY MONEY

......on this piece of garbage. Can't believe Spielberg had a hand in producing this pile of purile tripe. If the president's name was George Bush, they should have let the blasted computer wipe him out. 4 star film???? In your dreams!!!!! ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by ROTGUT at 18:40, 27 October 2008 | Report This Post


A breathless, hugely entertaining slice of stylish, escapist nonsense, Eagle Eye is nonetheless a parable - however unsubtle - on the technical age and mankind's obsession with the fruits of its own genius. Driven by yet another star turn from the now stratospheric Shia LaBoeuf, the film flies along at a terrific pace, veering dangerously close to unravelling in a loony final reel before finding salvation in an utterly brilliant last half hour. Of course the plot is at times unmanageable... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Eomer_King at 12:42, 27 October 2008 | Report This Post


I liked it

I thought it was fun. The action was great. Yeah, the bad guy reveal was a bit bollocks, but I went with it. I'll give it four stars. ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by beebs_ at 11:33, 27 October 2008 | Report This Post


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