Cast: Helen Mirren, Aaron Paul, Alan Rickman, Barkhad Abdi, Aisha Takow
Director: Gavin Hood
Duration: 102 minutes
Showing: Cinema Magic Metroplex Mall Naalya and Century Cinemax Acacia Mall, Kisementi
There is something about movies that are very close to home. Eye in the Sky is one such movie. Its subject matter is not something you can dust under the rug and pretend it would never happen because it has sadly become so commonplace. Drone attacks, terrorist cells, and such are no longer the stuff of conspiracy theorists’ wild mumblings. You would therefore think that such issues are too serious to inspire a movie, especially when the news gives us a dose of the same. Yet it has worked for Eye in the Sky.
In the movie, British military officer, Col Katherine Powell (Mirren) is heading up a mission to capture some big shots in the terrorism ranks. These big shots’ hideout is in Nairobi (insert the applause guys make when a familiar place or person is featured). She has a jamaa on the ground whose name is actually Jama (Abdi) – forgive the bad pun, couldn’t help it. Let me first pause to call out guys who said Abdi would disappear into oblivion after his breakout role in Captain Phillips – take a seat guys. Back to Eye in the Sky. Powell also has a guy in the sky, drone pilot Steve Watts (Paul). When she realises that it is going to take more than an arrest to contain the situation, she seeks out her boss, Lt Gen Frank Benson (Rickman –RIP). Benson takes the matter to his bosses and we see the absurdities that come with what is otherwise a tense situation, and also the ethical issues that arise.
The movie deals with some pretty heavy stuff yet manages to be entertaining enough to warrant a visit to the cinema. The cast is undoubtedly a strong one. There has been a disturbing trend of an ensemble cast bringing very little to the movie, except their big names. That is not the case here. The cast brought their A-game. Rickman’s presence is a poignant one, especially since he plays the sulky but amusing military man. Another of the movie’s strong points is the plot, which could have easily taken the emotional blackmail route or over dependence on visual effects but didn’t. Instead, we have a story whose end can’t come both fast and slow enough –the suspense is that good!