"Where Does Your Moral Compass Point?"
What You Need To Know:
Streaming on Netflix, OUTSIDE THE WIRE is a well-structured, entertaining science fiction thriller. It has a strong moral, patriotic worldview stressing compassion and human control over technology. The hero, Lt. Harp, has faith in people and supports his home country, the United States. Sadly, OUTSIDE THE WIRE is marred by lots of strong, gratuitous foul language and some extreme, bloody action violence. MOVIEGUIDE® urges extreme caution.
Set 15 years in the future, OUTSIDE THE WIRE follows a drone pilot sent into a civil war in Eastern Europe who runs into problems when the android soldier above him turns rogue and threatens civilians and the United States. Streaming on Netflix, OUTSIDE THE WIRE is a well-structured, entertaining science fiction thriller, with a strong moral, patriotic worldview, but it’s marred by lots of strong gratuitous foul language and some extreme action violence.
OUTSIDE THE WIRE begins in the year 2036 with Eastern Europe in full jeopardy. Civil war rages in the region, and the U.S. has been stationed as peacekeepers. The Pentagon has also okayed the use of robot soldiers called “Gumps” to aid in the crisis. While a ground battle ensues, Lieutenant Thomas Harp, a drone pilot stationed in Nevada, disobeys a direct order, which kills two Marines.
As punishment for his disobedience, the Air Force sends him to Camp Nathaniel overseas where the conflict continues. Lt. Harp meets Captain Leo, a tough commanding officer who seems impressed with Harp. Leo tells Harp he will be on the ground, instead of behind a screen operating a drone. Their mission is to remove weapons from insurgents “outside the wire,” or outside the territory they control as peacemakers.
Leo explains that the civil war began when a group named the Krasnys tried to make the Ukraine part of Russia. The Krasnys are run by a war lord named Vicktor Koval, who has Moscow’s full support to continue to make his dream a reality. The U.N. pulled out of the debacle, which leaves the United States to clean up the mess. A group called the Resistance also wants to thwart the plans of the Krasnys.
Before Leo and Harp go to complete their first task to deliver vaccines to women and children cholera victims outside the wire, Leo takes off his shirt. In doing so, he reveals that he’s an android. Harp is dumbfounded that the man (or sort of man) that he must work with is so lifelike.
On the ground, Harp learns very quickly that military action out from behind his computer screen is very different. Although Leo successfully calms down men with weapons, shooting breaks out, but the duo escapes unscathed.
Harp and Leo meet up with Sofiya, leader of the Resistance, to plan their next move. Along with Sofiya’s help, they track down who sold the Krasnys weapons earlier that morning. All of the puzzle pieces add up together until the next bit of military action.
Leo convinces Harp to destroy his “fail-safe” chip which the military uses to track him. At the time Harp doesn’t think much about it until civilians are put in danger, and Leo goes rogue. With Leo nowhere to be found, Harp starts to think this classified android operation might not be the gold mine the American officials hoped.
OUTSIDE THE WIRE’s Anthony Mackie (CAPTAIN AMERICA: CIVIL WAR) and Damon Idris (SNOWFALL) make a solid on-screen team. The action sequences that frequent the script are choreographed well. The movie has an engaging entertainment value, with plot points in appropriately placed within the movie’s nearly two-hour timeframe.
OUTSIDE THE WIRE has a mixed worldview. The two lead characters are representatives of two different worldviews. The real man, Harp, has a moral worldview while the android, Leo, displays a façade of morality and acts on his own accord in a lawless pagan way. It’s clear, however, that Leo the android is the villain. Leo asserts that sometimes you have to get down and dirty to accomplish any good, hence his complex nature. At first, Leo’s actions appear to have a positive impact on people. However, he really believes that humanity isn’t capable of learning from their mistakes, including their mistake of making an android solider like himself that can go rogue and take matters into his own hands. In this too, Leo displays strong Anti-Patriotic characteristics while Harp the other lead winds up making a decision showing faith in people and his home country, the United States.
In all this, OUTSIDE THE WIRE seems similar to AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTON, or the Marvel villain Thanos, who believes that killing many people to prove a point is worth it in the end. The villain also asserts he wants to destroy his creator, which is the United States. There are only two or so Christian elements, so the movie’s worldview would’ve been better served had there been mention of our Divine Savior, Jesus, who is humanity’s ultimate source of hope. Instead, viewers must settle for the moral hero saving the day. Sadly, though, OUTSIDE THE WIRE contains lots of strong, gratuitous foul language and some extreme bloody violence. So, MOVEIGUIDE® urges extreme caution.