The Island (BLU-RAY)

The Island

On Blu-Ray: 
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Running Time: 
136 Minutes
The clones aren't just in the movie...

The creators of the 1979 film Parts: The Clonus Horror sued DreamWorks for copyright infringement in The Island. It was settled out of court.

 The Island is a  from Michael Bay movie that begins as a sci-fi movie and then turns into a chase thriller. It centers on Lincoln Six Echo (Ewan McGregor), a survivor after the contamination of our world. The community that he lives in gathers survivors and re-educates them to perform mundane tasks to help the facility run. The only source of hope for the residents is "The Island", an isolated paradise that people are chosen to inhabit via a lottery. What seems like a safe haven in a desolate wasteland, the facility has darker motives that Lincoln Six Echo discovers as he digs deeper.

Warning: After this point there will be spoilers.

The first scenes of the movie live in a sci-fi world. The facility is beautifully constructed and could have hosted the entire movie. Sadly, when the truth is discovered, Bay shows his true colors. The residents are clones constructed as insurance for people who could afford the spare parts and Lincoln Six Echo just discovered the secret. After claiming his friend, Jordan Two Delta (Scarlett Johansson), the pair run from the facility. This would be fine and dandy, if having conscious living clones were legal. Dr. Merrick has to capture the renegade clones before the truth becomes known and, preferably, before Jordan Two Delta's owner dies. This action-adventure chase takes up most of the movie. There is a fight in a train terminal, multiple car chases with hover bikes and helicopters, and the classic "He's the clone, I'm not" standoff. The first portion of the movie could have been expanded into a really decent sci-fi movie that would have an enduring fan base. The rest is some of Bay's finest chase scenes. Together, they seem incongruent. We start in a future and end up in the near present. It was a bit of a let down.

The blu-ray has some nice special features that delve into the creation of the movie's sci-fi and chase elements.

The Island could have been two very different movies, but it wasn't. The two were smashed together and ended up like two different SUVs that had been cut in half and welded together. The seam is obvious, but the vehicle miraculously works, due in no small part to the exceptional acting that was put in. If you don't own The Island and like awesome chase scenes or psuedo-futuristic technology, pick it up.

Review by Sam Hayes