Elysium - Review

In Elysium, Neill Blomkamp's shrewdly revved-up and exciting dystopian thriller, Matt Damon sports a shaved head, which gives him a spooky ghost-face vibe, and his character, Max, spends most of the movie with a spidery black-metal exoskeleton implanted in his skull and spine. The surgically attached machinery serves several functions at once. It's there to make Max strong — a boost he critically needs, since he's been exposed to a dose of radiation that will leave him dead in just five days. It also allows him to download the contents of someone else's brain. But the most important purpose served by that added hardware may be visual and symbolic: It transforms Max into a hulkingly damaged yet superheroic man-machine — a variation on the title character of RoboCop. And it has the unmistakable look of a cross that he's been nailed to. Max isn't just fighting to save himself or his fellow earthlings. He's a guy who's been souped up into a postapocalyptic action-movie Christ.

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