Paycheck (2003) PG-13
Starring: Ben Affleck and Uma Thurman
The television trailers for Paycheck bored me to the point I didn't even bother to watch it until I ran out of other new releases at the video store. At the time of the theatrical release, I had no idea the movie was based on yet another Philip K. Dick short story. The setup for the story is great. A hotshot computer engineer works for companies and then gets his memory erased, so he can work for competitors without fear of infringing on any competitive practices. Something went seemingly wrong in his latest job when he wakes from having his memory zapped to discover he signed away rights to millions of shares of Fortune 500 company stock. An envelope mailed to his attorney provides the only clues to discover why. John Woo directs, creating a level of action not typically associated with psychological sci-fi material. Science fiction junkies should definitely give the story a chance, despite mixed reviews from most mainstream movie critics. The DVD is lackluster at best, providing now standard Dolby 5.1 Surround and little else to get excited about. The featurettes don't really show us anything we haven't seen before. I haven't actually read the story as written by PKD, but I'm envisioning the original to be a whole lot less John Woo.