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The Independent Critic

STARRING
Shia LaBeouf, Michelle Monaghan, Rosario Dawson, Billy Bob Thornton, Ethan Embry
DIRECTED BY
D.J. Caruso
SCREENPLAY
John Glenn, Travis Wright
MPAA RATING
Rated PG-13
RUNNING TIME
118 Mins.
DISTRIBUTED BY
Dreamworks SKG

 "Eagle Eye" Review 
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I'm not quite sold on Shia.

Rumored to be Hollywood's next "It" guy, Shia LaBeouf has had a series of high profile films including the fourth installment of "Indiana Jones," "Transformers," "Surf's Up" and the surprise hit "Disturbia."

However, we must also remember that LaBeouf has also given us such clunkers as "The Battle of Shaker Heights," "Constantine" and "Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle."

It all sort of evens out.

LaBeouf is certainly a promising young actor, but "Eagle Eye" is a definite step backward for both he and co-star Michelle Monaghan ("Made of Honor," "The Heartbreak Kid").

Somewhat reminiscent of the similarly nonsensical and hyped up "Crank," "Eagle Eye" is so ludicrous that one may need to head over to "Beverly Hills Chihuahua" to get a dose of reality. The basic premise of "Eagle Eye" involves two people brought together by a diabolical "voice" who seemingly has control of technology worldwide and is going to wreak havoc unless they do his bidding.

Sigh.

Can't you just see the holes in the film already?

This is the third film in a row for LaBeouf in which technology seemed to matter more than acting, and it's becoming increasingly difficult to tell if LaBeouf is going to live up to his promise or not. While I might expect this sort of film from the likes of a Jason Statham, it's disappointing from an actor who can, well, act.

Director D.J. Caruso, who worked with LaBeouf on "Disturbia," keeps the action flowing nonstop, a cheap and easy gimmick like to please fans of mindless, irrelevant action fluff. "Eagle Eye" has enough techno babble to appear to be a sci-fi type flick, but most who actually understand the theories behind science fiction are likely to groan with boredom here.

The simple fact is that the story behind "Eagle Eye" makes absolutely no sense, the characters are paper thin and, dare I say it, even the action is poorly edited despite being practically non-stop. It's so bad that, unlike the much more awful "Crank," I couldn't even laugh here. I was just plain bored.

"Eagle Eye" isn't a film for people who can turn off their brains, it's a film for people whose brains have been permanently muted. If you find that to be an insult, then so be it.

It's an insult.

While there's not much hope anyone could muster a decent performance in this techno crap, there's unfortunately not much of a sign that anyone's even trying. LaBeouf and Monaghan offer uninteresting performances, while the usually delightful Dawson disappoints and Thornton doesn't do much more than collect a paycheck.

I couldn't help but ponder as I was leaving "Eagle Eye"...What if I had control of all the technology in the world?

Wow, I could have stopped "Eagle Eye" from ever having been made.

Now, THAT'S a fantasy flick with a happy ending!

by Richard Propes
Copyright 2008
The Independent Critic

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