Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The 6th Day..ah Arnold and sci-fi.


The 6th Day

Director Roger Spottiswoode of Die Another Day brings us to a timeline that cattle, fish, chickens heck even household pets can be cloned.   The notion of human cloning trials or even experimentation is illegal and forbidden.  Adam Gibson (Arnold Schwarzenegger of Commando, The Terminator, T2) runs a private helicopter piloting service finds out his family dog Oliver has been killed and his friend and partner Hank (Michael Rappaport of Beautiful Girls) tells him he will cover for him.   Adam takes the dog to a firm called Re-pet and hears the sales pitch only to have second thoughts.  He heads back home with a doll for his daughter when he sees through the window, the family dog bouncing around the living room and thinks it is his wife’s doing.  As he approaches the door he then sees a clone of himself celebrating with his family.    Trying to get in his own house to confront the clone he is attacked by Replacement Technologies security team headed by Robert Marshal (Michael Rooker of Henry:Portrait of a Serial Killer and Mallrats) and Talia Eslworth (Sarah Wynter of Species 2 and Lost Souls).    Escaping them narrowly Adam heads to his friend Hank’s apartment.  The two catch up then Hank gets shot by an anti-cloning extremist called Tripp.  He says both Hank and their charter Michael Drucker (Tony Goldwyn of Ghost and American Gun) crashed the helicopter and it this is all secret.   Rather be captured by the Replacement Technologies Security team, Tripp blows his brains out so his memories cannot be retrieved and give away others of his movement. 

Green screen gets a lot of love in this movie.  Sneaking into Drucker’s company (which is no easy feat given how big Arnold is) Adam finds Dr Weir (Robert Duvall of True Grit 1969, The Godfather and Godfather II) the scientist behind the clones explains to Gibson that both Hank and Drucker were killed in a helicopter crash and they had to do a rush clone job to conceal this horrific accident for the sake of the company.   Without Drucker they cannot lobby for human clones for everything from replacing organs to bringing back loved ones.  So a decent story turns clich├ęd with fights with Schwarzenegger and moral issues with cloning and big business not caring about the little people.   Drucker is thwarted by Gibson and his clone.  Clone Gibson moves to the other end of the planet with a twin company of the charter piloting in Argentina (Don’t cry for him) and Adam returns to his family with a new appreciation of cloning and the knee jerk feeling he had lessened.   Decent writing and good premise went a bit crackers with production.   A potential sci-fi went full blown action with far too many explosions and gunfights.  Schwarzenegger’s character was not a trained paramilitary man.   It was over the top fights and making Arnold once again invincible.   It could be better but it is what it is.   View with caution.