Trailer preview: Can Duncan Jones top ‘Moon’ with ‘Source Code’?

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Time Out takes a look at the first trailer for ‘Source Code’, the second film from Duncan ‘son of Bowie’ Jones, director of last year’s Brit hit ‘Moon’.

Following the success of his first feature ‘Moon’, it wasn’t going to be long before Duncan Jones got a crack at the Hollywood big time. But can his new film ‘Source Code’, starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Michelle Monaghan, fulfil the promise of that remarkable debut?

The trailer gives no clear indication. The very ‘Twilight Zone’ idea behind the movie is that the US military have developed a machine that can allow users to travel back in time and inhabit the body of another person – but only during the last eight minutes of their life. Gyllenhaal plays the hapless soldier who must repeatedly relive the last minutes of one doomed soul, just before the train he’s on is blown sky-high.

So it’s a little bit ‘Quantum Leap’, a little bit ‘Groundhog Day’ and, by the look of things, a whole lot of ‘Bourne’. There are some promising things in the trailer: some impressive explosions, some neat time-switch-paradox antics and a reliable cast which also includes Jeffrey Wright and Vera Farmiga.

If there’s a drawback, it’s that, from the trailer at least, the whole thing looks a bit small-scale. It’s a ridiculous but potentially rewarding concept, but are we going to be restricted to one eight-minute sequence over and over? Won’t that get a tad repetitive? If anyone can find a way to make an Amtrak carriage look exciting, it’s Jones – after all, he did wonders with a pile of rocks and dust in ‘Moon’. But how much drama can he really bring to a story which endlessly repeats itself?

So the jury’s still out: we’re keen to see anything Duncan Jones comes up with, but might ‘Source Code’ err a little too far on the side of glossy Hollywood product? Likewise, we’re intrigued by the central idea, but hoping it won’t just be a lot of running, shouting and exploding confined to a single train carriage.

Judge for yourself when ‘Source Code’ is released next year.



Author: Tom Huddleston



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