I remember being one of the very few people who caught this in theaters, as it went on to be considered a Box Office bomb. I came out of it thinking the same thing I did this time around; it's a lot of fun, but I'd completely understand anyone's criticisms. I do have a few of my own, but for the most part, I had a good time with it. The concept of a first-person filmed action movie, any way you slice it, is a thrill ride. It's just that some thrill rides are a little less shaky, a little more smooth, and we prefer them.
That's not just because the whole thing is filmed in a shaky, first-person way either. The whole unravelling of the movie is shaky, and it's often hard to follow (at least for me). It begins with our first-person hero, Henry (played collectively by cinematographers, Chris W. Johnson, Pasha Kapinos, Vsevolod Kaptur, Fedor Lyass, and cameraman, Robin Roles), waking up inside a lab, where a scientist named Estelle (Haley Bennett) who claims to be his wife is working on him, replacing his missing limbs (after a bad accident) with cybernetic enhancements.
Before we know it, a band of mercenaries raid the lab (located on an air ship), led by a man named Akan (Danila Kozlovsky). He claims that Estelle's work is his property, and the big first-person chase begins. Along the way, he is aided by a strange master of disguise named Jimmy (Sharlto Copley). Soon, he finds himself having to rescue Estelle from Akan; a madman bent on destroying the world. Therein lies my first problem with the movie; the villain's motives are just too simple. The villain himself is kinda creepy and effective in his own way though, so it's not all bad.
I always thought that the idea for this was an awesome one, especially if you got to see it in 3D, putting you into the action. However, I don't even remember whether or not this was in 3D, and I almost wanna say that it wasn't and that was part of the disappointment after leaving the movie. Beyond that, it cuts pretty abruptly at times, and though it didn't effect me in such a way, and it may go without saying, this isn't good for anyone with motion sickness. If you can handle it all, however, just imagine it as though this was a first-person action game that was adapted to film. It's kinda like the creators looked at the first-person sequence in 'Doom', said "this movie should just be all this", and decided to make it happen, just a little more real-world.
There's a lot of high octane stuff going on here. If you can follow close enough, you can really just toss your brain out the window for an hour and a half and enjoy this thrill ride AS Henry. It's not without a fair share of gore for the more violent at heart either. It's another example of how a certain type of video game movie could be done, but it's not a video game. It could stand to run a little bit smoother at times, but I get that it's rough because you're experiencing Henry's position. If you have Amazon Prime (Canada) you can go check it out and judge for yourself. It's a very "in-between" movie, but I tend to lean towards the side that sees it as a simple roller-coaster ride, and nothing much more.