"Creating a Safer Tomorrow"
Despite his reported Scientology beliefs, Tom Cruise sometimes has overt Christian, redemptive, biblical references in some of his movies, such as the first MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE movie and MINORITY REPORT. EDGE OF TOMORROW seems to follow that pattern, although its GROUNDHOG DAY plot device of being able to relive a significant part of your life has some Non-Christian, humanist, pagan aspects.
In the movie, Cruise plays Major Cage, a public relations spokesperson for the American military. An army of alien monsters living on some asteroids has invaded Earth during a meteor shower. They’ve already decimated Europe and are spreading out from there. Major Cage travels to London to do the PR for an upcoming D-Day type invasion of France, but the British general in charge of the operation wants him on the front lines embedded with the troops. This upsets Cage because he’s had no real fight training since he was in a college military program back in America. He tries to convince the general not to send him, but the general refuses to be convinced. Cage goes berserk and tries to run away, but he’s tasered into unconsciousness.
Cage wakes up with handcuffs on his hands in the middle of Heathrow Airport, the staging area for the massive helicopters that will drop the soldiers, dressed in new high-tech metal supersuits, onto the beaches of Normandy. Instead of handling PR, Major Cage will now be used as cannon fodder with all the other soldiers. He meets his new war buddies, including the gruff, no-nonsense drill sergeant from Kentucky, Farell, leading them.
Sure enough, chaos breaks loose on the beaches. It seems that the aliens somehow knew the invasion was coming. Major Cage dies pretty quickly when he manages to explode one of the bigger alien monsters, but the explosion also takes out Cage.
Cage suddenly wakes up back on the tarmac at Heathrow Airport. He starts to experience the same things he just lived, but this time he tries to help the other soldiers he saw falling around him. One of the soldiers he tries to help is a female Special Forces soldier named Rita (Emily Blunt), but the same thing happens. Everybody still dies.
Eventually, Cage learns from Rita that the blood of the alien he killed has given him the God-like powers of the alien leader to relive recent events and learn from them. Those powers are, in fact, what helps the aliens learn from their mistakes and take over planet after planet. With help from Rita, Cage tries to find a way to learn from their mistakes, find the alien leader, and kill it. The problem is, the powers can go away if you’re only wounded in battle and a medic gives you a blood transfusion.
EDGE OF TOMORROW is a rousing, clever science fiction thriller. It has some rather brilliant twists. The acting is excellent as well. However, the alien monsters don’t have much personality. This is less enjoyable. Also, the movie’s portrayal of the time loop the heroes undergo may be a little confusing for some or even many viewers. It also seems to create a couple plot holes, or at least leave some unanswered questions. That said, the growing romance between Major Cage and Rita lends some emotional heft to the story. Even better, it has no sex scenes or objectionable lewd content.
EDGE OF TOMORROW has some strong, overt Christian, redemptive content. The gruff drill sergeant, played wonderfully by Bill Paxton, talks about baptism under fire and the crucible of battle that can lead soldiers to experience a “born-again” sensation. The movie’s ending also has an overt water baptism and resurrection scene. It leads to a really inspiring last scene that’s uplifting.
Undermining this positive content are plenty of foul language, the violent and intense battle scenes, the scary aliens, and some humanist, pagan content. For example, the idea of a time loop allowing you to change the past so you eventually can defeat an evil menace is a bit nominalistic, in both a pagan and humanist way. Also, the time loop means that the hero sometimes has to be killed so that he still can go back and change the past to defeat the evil aliens. This seems like moral relativism. Because of these problems, MOVIEGUIDE® advises extreme caution for EDGE OF TOMORROW.
(Pa, CC, BB, H, LL, VV, N, MM) Light mixed pagan worldview with strong Christian, redemptive, moral elements including a water baptism and resurrection, references to having a “born again” experience, possible symbolic references to Alpha and Omega (one of the names of Jesus), other references to baptism, elements of self-sacrifice, hero tries to save others and defeat an evil force, but the time loop plot device is a bit humanist, nominalistic and pagan because it allows the heroes to relive the past so they can win, but they sometimes have to kill themselves in order for their plans to change the future to work, so the consequences to reality are minimized; 22 obscenities (mostly “h,” “s,” and a** words, but one “f” word and a couple SOBs), two strong profanities, and one light exclamatory profanity; strong, intense action scenes, many involving scary alien monsters, but not extremely gory or bloody or graphic, including war battles with fast-moving alien monsters with tentacles, lots of gunfire, lots of explosions, lots of aliens being shot, two men are squashed by falling helicopter, man’s face burned by falling debris from explosion, some black alien blood splashes dying human soldier, man tased; no sex scenes or lewd content; brief upper male nudity and rear male nudity in one scene as soldiers dress for battle; no alcohol use; no smoking or drugs; and, soldiers caught gambling but their sergeant says gambling is bad because it leads them to rely too much on luck or fate rather than themselves, and some moral relativism when wounded hero is deliberately killed a few times so he can go back in time again to stop the bad guys.
EDGE OF TOMORROW stars Tom Cruise as Major Cage, a public relations spokesperson for the American military. An army of alien monsters living on some asteroids has invaded Earth during a meteor shower. They’ve decimated Europe and are spreading out from there. Despite his lack of fighting experience and against his will, Major Cage is forced to take part in a D-Day style invasion of France to stop the aliens. Things change when Cage is caught in a time loop and gets to relive the recent past over and over again. With help from a female soldier, the time loop may enable Cage to defeat the enemy.
EDGE OF TOMORROW is a rousing, clever, well-acted science fiction thriller. However, the alien monsters don’t have much personality. Also, there seem to be a several plot holes. That said, the movie contains strong Christian, redemptive, moral content that’s sometimes uplifting. Undermining this positive content are plenty of foul language, violent and intense battle scenes, scary aliens, and some humanist, pagan content. Because of these objectionable elements, MOVIEGUIDE® advises extreme caution for EDGE OF TOMORROW.