Tuesday, June 26, 2007


A sorta sci-fi take on the immortal film noir classic, LAURA, Touchstone’s DÉJÀ VU (2006) is a satisfyingly slick little time travel thriller, one of the best treatments of the subject since Terry Gilliam’s 12 MONKEYS.

Denzel Washington (TRAINING DAY) is a federal agent called to New Orleans after a terrorist bomb attack on a ferry. Soon, a new weapon on the war on terror is revealed to him: a time-shifting surveillance device that can see exactly four and a half days into the past. The investigation is soon complicated by his growing emotional attachment to a woman he observes with the device – a woman who is apparently a victim of the bomb blast.

DÉJÀ VU is a big-budget, A-list studio thriller with the heart of a B-movie. It’s relatively smart and involving, trotting out the usual paradoxes and twists inherent in the time travel genre. Washington and the supporting the cast – including Val Kilmer, Bruce Greenwood and Jim Caviezel – are fine; each turning in exactly the performances you’d expect, with no notable flourishes or individual style. Veteran Tony Scott (TOP GUN, CRIMSON TIDE) turns in his usual, souless, slick directorial job, although the editing on this one’s a bit more coherent than usual.

The Touchstone DVD is solid, with a pristine 2.35: anamorphic widescreen transfer, a thundering Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound track, and a handful of slick behind-the-scenes featurettes and the usual deleted and extended scenes. There are also trailers for other current Touchstone/Disney releases.

A decent sci-fi thriller, worth a rental.

BUY: Deja Vu