Thursday, August 15, 2013

Review: Paranoia

Release date: August 16, 2013
Running time: 115 minutes
Starring: Liam Hemsworth, Amber Heard, Gary Oldman, Harrison Ford, Richard Dreyfuss, Lucas Till
Who to see it with: Oldman and Ford fans; those who think Liam is the hotter Hemsworth brother


Paranoia is an alright, sometimes illogical thriller. Low-level tech company employee Adam (Hemsworth) is fired. When he reacts by going wild with a company credit card, former boss Nick Wyatt (Oldman) is strangely convinced that he's the right man to assist with a mission involving Eikon, the corporation of rival and former partner Jock Goddard (Ford). Hemsworth is effective as a guy whose ambition exceeds his opportunities and strives to surpass his unambitious, comical dad (Dreyfuss). I can see him following in his brother's footsteps with the right roles. Heard is fine as his smart, prickly coworker Emma, a role that develops in expected ways. Till's nerdy best friend reminded me of Rachael Leigh Cook in She's All That, his appearance dulled with glasses and a bad hairstyle. Sleazy Oldman and grumpy Ford are fun to watch, especially during the rare times when they're together onscreen.
Similar to Wyatt's view of Adam's reckless behavior as a sign of potential, the plot twists often seem to rely on questionable decision making or lack of foresight. Occasionally, characters seem to be steps ahead of the others, only for it to be later revealed that mistakes were made that don't fit their overly calculating ways. The story doesn't stand out from that of the average twisty thriller, but its focus on shady corporations and omnipresent surveillance make it timely and fairly engaging. Paranoia is a predictable thriller enhanced by Gary Oldman and Harrison Ford's corporate duel.

Rent it.

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