MOVIE RATING: 5 stars (A)
(Updated May 25, 2012)
I watched Jumper (2008) for a second time this week, having seen it for the first time when it came out on DVD a year or two ago. I really liked the movie when I first saw it, but I love it even more now. I’ve got it on my Top 200 Movie list. It’s one of the few films of the last decade that I can honestly say I wish was quite a bit longer. It’s only 88 minutes and it just flies through those few minutes leaving you wanting more…hence Jumper 2 which is in development now. Another 30 minutes could easily be added to this flick. The story is simply so intriguing that I felt that more back story and character development could have been included. But I also appreciate that director Doug Liman gave us a great short film that never seems to have any dead spots for bathroom breaks. Liman really changed action movie making IMO with The Bourne Identity (2002), which absolutely blew me away when I saw it on DVD. It still blows me away at how good that movie is when I see it now. Liman really crafted a new standard for the thinking man’s action movie with The Bourne Identity and then Jumper. Director Paul Greengrass amazingly took Liman’s model and made it even better in the Bourne sequels The Bourne Supremacy (2004) and The Bourne Ultimatum (2007).
The Jumper storyline is a combination of sci-fi, action and drama. The blend is perfect because it all seems so believable within the framework of the movie. It’s probably good that Liman doesn’t get into explaining how the teleporting is possible, because that might just take away from the story. Actors Hayden Christensen and Jamie Bell seem perfectly suited to their characters, as does Samuel Jackson as the “bad guy”. Even Rachel Bilson as the love interest in the film is good casting, in sharp contrast to the eye candy status of Megan Fox in Transformers (2007). Don’t get me wrong, Megan Fox is gorgeous looking in Transformers…but that’s about it. Whereas Rachel Bilson is gorgeous looking in Jumper, but she’s also a talented actor and shows it in this film.
Of course part of what always makes a good action/drama flick is the filming on location. And Jumper impresses on that level as well. The cinematography is brilliant and amazingly Liman got limited access to film in the actual Colosseum in Rome…a rare feat for filmmakers. The Colosseum scenes are impressive for their beauty. Apparently they had to film those scenes using only natural light since Colosseum Officials wouldn’t allow them to set-up equipment on the ground. So the shots are all handheld with natural light.
Bottom line is that Jumper is an outstanding film. I’m hoping a sequel gets green-lit someday.
Check out details on this film and its excellent Blu-ray presentation at Blu-ray.com.