‘Eye In The Sky’ (2016, 15)

A film unlike any other I’ve seen, ‘Eye In The Sky’ is a film that I couldn’t help but enjoy – why that it is, I haven’t quite worked out.

‘Eye In The Sky’ follows the story of a drone attack over Nairobi, Kenya as a group of military and government personnel deliberate and argue about what course of action should be taken when some suicide bombers are detected in the suburbs. Led by British Colonel Katherine Powell (Helen Mirren), the top-secret mission escalates when a small nine-year-old girl enters the kill zone from an easy capture to a difficult kill.

The film almost occurs in real-time as virtually all of the one-hour-forty-two run-time is taken up with the government officials and military personnel deliberating, all while the drone hovers above Nairobi and the suicide bombers prepare for their attack. It’s tense throughout the film, the only humour coming in the form of Lieutenant General Frank Benson (Alan Rickman) who – through a series of quips and scenes – adds some brief moments of comic relief to an otherwise wholly dark and serious film.

I wouldn’t exactly call ‘Eye In The Sky’ ‘action-packed’; there’s a brief chase through the alleys of Nairobi but that takes up no more than a minute. But this film doesn’t need action – its dramatic and edge-of-your-seat enough as it is. Looking at the basic premise for the film, it sound now rather boring: one-and-a-half hours of people arguing and deliberating. However, for some inexplicable reason, I was absolutely absorbed in the narrative that was playing out before me in the cinema, the acting was brilliant, the plot was strong, and at no point was I clock-watching or waiting for the credits to roll.

There’s no doubt that the best part of this film was the ending. For reasons I won’t disclose, it was a compelling final act to an amazing film which made you question judgements you may have made earlier in the film. That’s what ‘Eye In The Sky’ is really all about – questioning your judgements. In the closing minutes of the movie, the two sides of the film seem to swap roles and you can’t help but wonder about what you would’ve done if you were in the same situation of the characterise this film. Capture? Kill? Or just leave it to someone else? That’s what I like about this film – it’s about more than just whether to blow up two suicide bombers or not. It’s about the mind, how people think, how people want other people to think.

I can’t fault much with this film at all. If I’m being picky, there are two small drones that are used in the film – one the shape and size of a hummingbird, the other of a small beetle. These are a bit unrealistic but it didn’t take away from the overall effect of the film. Because of this, I;m giving ‘Eye In The Sky’ ten-out-of-ten – good characters, strong plot, and a moral which leaves you questioning your own thoughts.

10/10.

 

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