Push - TV Review

'the final feeling in a film which cost $38million is one of being sold short'

Push's decision to dispense with the exposition necessary to set up its world of 'Pushers' and 'Sniffers' in an opening credits voiceover is rather endemic of its snappy opening third, which does a good job of drawing you in to writer David Bourla's sci-fi inflected world with a minimum of fuss and a maximum of interest. Set entirely in Hong Kong, director Paul McGuigan facilitates your absorption into a world where some people are blessed with the descriptively named powers; some using them for good, others for evil.

Almost inevitably in this sort of thing though, Bourla's story can't quite keep up with its ideas. There are plot holes aplenty, one of which (the revelation roughly halfway through that the bad guys can erase memories) appears to suggest that all this running around could be ended rather simply. As ever, these can be avoided depending on your suspension of disbelief limit but even those with an abnormally high one will start to ask questions of the plot once the ability to 'Shadow' someone or something is introduced late on.

The cast of smart young things work well and, especially in the stronger opening third, keep things interesting. Chris Evans is about to graduate to bigger things with Captain America and here he shows how that role might potentially work; he is square-jawed and macho but he's also by turns naive and vulnerable and his acting ability more than lives up to the material on display here, weaknesses of said material not withstanding. Dakota Fanning continues her move from child star to veritable acting talent whilst Camilla Belle makes a bid to be noticed only to let herself down with a pretty one-dimensional take on the damsel in distress; something which we've already seen to similar ill-effect in When A Stranger Calls.

The constantly impressive soundtrack is noteworthy but the final feeling in a film which cost $38million is one of being sold short. It rattles on for far too long, building to the inevitable 'throw everything at the screen' battle which, despite a third act twist of sorts, feels out of place and unsatisfying. Rather than grow into the film from his impressive start, McGuigan too feels like he regresses during the course of it, with huge sections appearing distinctly televisual: an easy observation to make considering his recent CV contains two TV projects but nevertheless a fair summary of his approach which sadly leads Push astray from its promising beginning.

Push was showing on Sky Movies.

Look further...

'I apparently didn’t notice that [Push] ranks somewhere lower then Battlefield Earth for most critics' - Things That Don't Suck


  1. heeheeheee... i actually liked this movie... but then i probably have a high ability to suspend my disbelief... and i came into it with low expectations. i guess, sometimes i just figure a movie is going to be silly and fun- and don't expect to be blown away by it... i don't know. i thought there were some interesting ideas in it and some really pretty visual moments.

  2. Yeah, I mean I really liked the idea and the setup - the whole world did catch my attention and make me semi-believe in it - but I did have a problem with the plot holes on a 'oh come on' level. If you can look past them then I can imagine that it's a lot more fun to watch all the way through.