Cinematic Releases: Self/Less

Ryan Reynolds stars in Self/Less. Yay! Not really.

"This movie is making me sleepy."
Visual master Tarsem Singh abandons the conceptual masterpieces that have defined his career with a flat footed jaunt in to the realm of science based action. Centered on a phenomenal premise about man's need to live, Singh fails miserably with a motion picture that could have been as sleek and cool as the Bradley Cooper vehicle, Limitless. Self/Less is nowhere near as fun, lacks any heart, and sticks around way too long as characters spend the entire movie on the run from the bad guys. Luckily for audiences, Mr. Kingsley's few scenes are enough to make the movie a tad bit interesting as everyone else here is bored out of their minds with a preposterous script and a string of action sequences that feel convoluted and droopy eyed. 

Taking into account Tarsem's flair for amazing looking movies, Self/Less is a massive step in the wrong direction for the man that brought us the classic R.E.M. Losing My Religion video, The Cell, and The Fall. While Singh may have thought it was a good idea to try something new, Self/Less is a shell of a concept that feels devoid of anything original or appealing. This is the definition of predictability. This is the point at which artistry fails and is overrun by corporate entities with large checkbooks that destroy the directorial careers of visionaries like Tarsem Singh. Not one second of this feature feels like Tarsem and that makes this fan extremely sad. 

Self/Less is a meandering conglomeration of multiple ideas we've all seen before. Instead of trying anything new with the topic of consciousness transference, the movie quickly devolves into just another chase movie hell bent on ruining a mildly unique premise with gun fights, typical looking hand to hand combat, and scenes that would fit much better in a Jean Claude Van Damme movie from the '90s. Much like last year's Transcendence, a huge idea is whittled down to nothing as Ryan Reynolds plays himself once again in a movie that would have fit much better in the early fall or winter seasons.

"I told you, you son of a bitch.
I wanted to skip right to Deadpool."
Coming away from Self/Less, the only thing worthwhile are the opening sequences that paint a vivid picture of societal woes due to the villainous attributes of those with too much money. Ben Kingsley's scenes are obviously the best of the entire film. And the synth based soundtrack definitely scores some points for this nearly abysmal summer failure. With Ryan Reynolds trying to rebuild his career after numerous box office blunders, Self/Less takes away from the good karma he built this last year with the comedy horror, The Voices

If you must see Self/Less, don't say I didn't warn you. You've seen everything in this movie before, done better by directors that didn't have to sell out to try and get a movie made. This is a straight up Netflix rental not worthy of the price of admission. Tarsem needs to go back to doing what he does best: art. 

Like this? Please share.
StumbleUpon Reddit Pinterest Facebook Twitter Addthis