I wasn't sure what I expected before I watched Elysium, as I didn't know much about it. I wasn't blown away, but the film was decent and filled with good performances. It's clearly a metaphor for the wealth gap in today's society, but that's a conversation for another time.
The story is well told, with Matt Damon's character Max being the hero who wants to unite the rich and the poor. The film does tend to drag from time to time, with a lot of Elysium's action being difficult to differentiate between. Because of this, most of the action sequences seem tedious and confusing.
What won me over with Elysium was the epic climax that really showed how great of an actor Sharlto Copley is, as well as the talent that Neill Blomkamp has for screenwriting. Most of the film is slightly boring, but the ending more than makes up for it.
Shortly after director Neill Blomkamp started work on his follow-up feature, I was curious as to where it would stand in regards to District 9. Even though it's not as strong as his debut, Elysium is still a good movie that offers plenty of action and social commentary Blomkamp is well known for. The man knows how to do some of this generation's better, original sic-fi films and Elysium further proves that point.
Blomkamp delivers another solid story of the reluctant hero going on a mission to save everyone. While it's not the most original tale, it's elevated by the social commentary peppered throughout. This time around, the director tackles the social gap apparent in today's society; showing us a world where the wealthy live in a pristine space station, away from the majority scraping by on a desolate Earth. Matt Damon plays the reluctant hero, Max. He does a great job of playing somebody who starts out wanting to help himself, but soon fights for the lives of everyone. Sharlto Copley steals the show as villainous mercenary, Kruger. He is brilliant to watch, with his character becoming more unstable as the film progresses. Once again, Blomkamp excels at action scenes. Elysium features plenty of raw, exciting action scenes that are fun to watch; with the only downside being the movement of the camera making it hard to watch at times.
Elysium may hold up to director Blomkamp's debut feature, District 9; but it's still a highly entertaining movie. Backed by smart social commentary, great performances, and fun action scenes, fans of the director's previous film will find a lot to like here as well. Neill Blomkamp further proves himself as a capable director to keep an eye on.