When Bradley Cooper starred in the film “Limitless”, the world got a fantastical yet reality grounded idea of what a human being could be capable of if they possessed 100% of their brain’s capacity. It was a neat concept, very well portrayed and it was unique and simple enough that people could get hooked onto the concept. “Lucy” on the other hand took this concept and took it into a psychotically warped fantastical direction that is hard to explain; even the characters in the film seemed incapable of sorting everything out. Is this approach high concept gold or butt backwards bull? Were about to soak up some brain boosting drugs and find out. The titular character Lucy (Scarlett Johansson) was supposed to be nothing more than a delivery girl, supplying an unknown drug to a Mafia crime boss.
Things turn sour and bloody when Lucy is forced to become a drug mule, stitching the drugs into her lower stomach for delivery. But when the drugs rupture and the contents mutate her structure and cerebral cortex into a super human being, she finds herself gaining powers and losing her humanity simultaneously. Lucy contacts Prof. Norman (Morgan Freeman) and hopes he can help her save herself before her mind reaches 100% capacity and loses her humanity. As I said before, when I saw this I was expecting a more sci-fi, whacked out version of “Limitless.” But when I saw this film, I had no idea how whacked out and truly out there this movie was going to be.
“Lucy” starts off with an intense, attention grabbing introduction. The dilemma and drama grips you and slowly builds itself up as a different breed of animal altogether. However, there comes a point when you stop believing this character can literally do anything and start wishing that you were on drugs so you can try and figure out who or what the hell this movie is trying to create. The movie mixes X-men level super powers with intense car chases and gun fights that definitely spark interests in our eyes, but our brains are left shooting blanks the longer the movie tries to wow us with its increasingly woeful wonders. The movie practically gives up trying to develop characters or a story in wake of flashier special effects, not even Johansson and Freeman; two very talented names can pull your attention away from disintegrating fingernails and visibly seeing cellphone signals.
Lucy isn’t the only one become deader the more drugs leak into her system, the audience is feeling number by the minute and the film’s climax is so ridiculously convoluted and confusing; I couldn’t even describe or explain it if I had 100% of my brain’s potential. I won’t deny the visual spectacles of this movie truly are interesting to watch and it started us off with a good enough opening act that makes you think the best is yet to come. But this film’s concept of interest is much like it’s idea of evolution: it looks cool and all but no one really gives a crap about it if it doesn’t make a lick of sense to someone who isn’t tripping off acid or PCP.
“Lucy” is a strange, warped and very weird little ride that passes cosmic nonsense off as something more meaningful then it actually is. Its clear director Luc Besson (The Family, The Fifth Element) was attempting something different, but different doesn’t always mean better and neither does it mean it’s going to make for a very fulfilling film experience. On the few plus sides, it’s nice seeing Scarlett kick ass and flip bad guys without needing black spandex and spy gear. Overall, “Lucy” had no idea what she would become when she reached 100% and the same can totally be said for the film itself. This movie is a malformed, mismatched mess of psychic flare, random gun fights and drug induced super powers that gave me a case of cryptic Kryptonite. Whatever this movie was trying to say or be, I didn’t get it and if you did then good for you; but I’m not going through a second viewing and neither do I recommend a first one.