2008-02-29 / Community

MovieScope

"Jumper" - Sci-FiLocation Shoot
Review By Robert Snyder

The location scout for "Jumper" certainly must have had a major headache making this movie.

Based on the Steven Gould science fiction novels, its main character, David Rice (Hayden Christensen), repeatedly leaps through "the spacetime fabric," landing for brief visits at every international tourist trap on Earth.

In one sequence, he has a wrestling match with a British jumper (Jamie Bell), which takes them for action moments in Las Vegas, on the Empire State Building, at the Pyramids, and to a host of other colorful, eye-catching locations. We are also treated to stops at the Roman Coliseum (although David takes a plane there) and Mount Everest.

It's not surprising that a teacher has suggested using the film in his Geography course.

With jumpy pacing by ever-speedy "Bourne Identity" director Doug Liman, "Jumper" begins as bullied young David falls through the ice in a Michigan Lake and winds up, wet and bewildered, in his local library. He then gets the hang of his teleporting talent, realizing that this is a great way to rob banks (he lacks the moral code of your average super hero).

Before long, he's globe-hopping to European singles bars, picking up girls and spending his ill-gotten gains. However, on his tail is a group of anti- Jumper law enforcement types, called the Paladins, headed by silver-haired Roland (Samuel L. Jackson), equipped with a huge nasty Taser prod. Roland is a mean man, full of Biblical wrath for Jumpers. Reminiscent of Jackson's "Pulp Fiction" hit man, Roland says, "Only God has the right to be in all places at all times," before enacting his vengeance.

Into the mix comes Millie (Rachel Bilson), David's high school sweetheart. She can't understand his line that he made his big bucks in banking when he flunked 12th grade algebra. She also can't figure out David's ability to bypass security guards.

"Jumper" is mindless entertainment that appeals to the teen market. It should spawn multiple sequels. This means another franchise for the "Bourne Identity" director, who hardly needs to jumpstart his career.

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