Confirming the belief of the film’s resident evil executive that everyone steals, this dreadfully derivative thriller liberally borrows elements The Net and Wall Street and almost everything in between. A wanna-be tech hotshot (Liam Hemsworth), seduced by fame and fortune, is roped into an espionage battle between rival corporate Goliaths (Gary Oldman and Harrison Ford). The disillusionment that follows his Faustian bargain comes quickly, though not before the hunk can successfully woo a beauty (Amber Heard) while exuding more repugnant smugness than a dozen like-minded social climbers.
While the atmosphere should be sexy and sinister, director Robert Luketic (Legally Blonde) makes every action scene look as dreary as possible, and even the reunion of the two Air Force One veterans results in pedestrian showdowns instead of clash-of-the-titans grandeur. The fact that Hemsworth is severely lacking in leading-man charisma also doesn’t help the pervasive overall incompetence of the film, which fixates on the perils and panic of our modern surveillance culture while itself proving to be borderline unwatchable.
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