Release Date: July 25th, 2014
Runtime: 90 minutes
MPAA Rating: Rated R for strong violence, disturbing images, and sexuality
Cast: Scarlet Johansson, Morgan Freeman
Coming off the weird but intriguing “Her”, and the brilliant “Under the Skin”, Scarlet Johansson is on a roll. In “Lucy”, Director and writer Luc Besson (“The Fifth Element”) capitalizes on this momentum and uses Johansson’s considerable charisma and talent to carry the audience through a series of logic gaps where one’s ability to suspend disbelief is thoroughly tested.
“Lucy” follows the story of a woman who is accidentally caught up in a deal, and ends up being exposed to a drug which unlocks 100% of the brain’s capacity. This gives her all sorts of abilities which I will not reveal, but suffice it to say that it gets a little silly. Time is stopped, gravity is ignored, etc, etc.
The premise, that humans only use 10 percent of their brains and could unlock other planes of existence by tapping into the other 90%, is a myth. People use pretty much 100% of their brains, just not at the same time. You don’t use all your body’s muscles simultaneously either (unless you’re using this), but that doesn’t mean those muscles don’t get used. There is no reason to use the entire brain concurrently because you don’t need all the brain’s functions at once.
With that said, the idea that a drug could let someone tap in to the brain’s full potential is intriguing. A similar concept was executed well in the 2011 film “Limitless”, and it makes for a fun story here. While the action is obviously unbelievable and over-the-top, it is entertaining and Johansson’s performance makes it work.
It is a little ironic that it is necessary to turn your brain off to enjoy a movie about using your entire brain, but sometimes that is okay for a summer movie. “Lucy” doesn’t necessarily bring the ongoing Johanaissance to a new level, but it doesn’t derail it either.
On the It’s An Ordinary Blog movie review scale from one to ten where one is the worst, five is the best, and ten is the worst again: I give “Lucy” a 7.829735623 with an emoticon based ranking of: “YAY! Physics-free fighting!”