Next...is next to NOTHING (Jerome
A. Holst © 2007)
Here's the basic plot.
Nicholas Cage plays Cris Johnson, aka, Frank
Cadillac, a Las Vegas lounge magician
with the unique gift of future sight...but only
two minutes into the future.
Cris has been traumatized since his childhood
with the ability to see the future and does his
best to keep it a secret. He fears nefarious
organizations who would misuse his power. But in
his act, Cris uses this unique ability.
For example, he foresees that a latch on a
necklace of a Asian woman in the audience will
fail. So Cris tells her in three seconds your
necklace will fall off. It happens. Wow!
Everyone is amazed.
Off hours, Cris surreptitiously loots the
gaming tables and machines to make some extra
money. After all, he can see two minutes into
the future, so he bides his time and makes the
safe bets. He takes his ill gotten gains to an
old car mechanic (played by Peter Falk in a cameo
Cris temporarily held captive by FBI
What Cris doesn't realize is that FBI agent
Callie Ferris (Julianne Moore) suspects he has
an ability that could be utilized to find a
nuclear bomb stowed someplace in Los Angeles.
When he realizes they are watching, he eludes
them, but not before meeting a young women named
Liz (Jessica Biel) whom he has been seeing with
his future sight.
He goes to the restaurant where Liz is supposed
show, wangles his way into her good graces and
then snags a ride out of town and away from the
Along the way, Cris falls in love with Liz as
she visits an Indian reservation where she
teaches. Delayed by a rain store and washed out
roads, Cris and Liz stay over night at a motel.
The next morning they kiss and make love. Cris
learns that when he is near Liz he has the
ability to see further in to the future that he
ever has before. Why she has this effect on him
is never explained.
A short time later, Liz is asleep and Cris is
staring at the ceiling and contemplating his
future. Everything that happens from this point
in the film is just a possible future that Cris
is seeing in his mind.
Most of the time, Cris uses his ability to
alter events, for instance, turning left instead
of right to avoid pursuing FBI agents or
directing FBI agents to find hidden terrorist
snipers or bombs.
At the end of the film, the director cuts back
to the moment where Cris is lying in bed with
his new found love. Nothing that happened in
most of the film actually happened. A Dallas
Bobby Ewing moment.
And to top it off, the FBI never find the
nuclear bomb. Of course, it explodes in the
alternate future (seen by Cris) and kills
everybody. It is this act that brings us back to
Cris lying in bed next to Liz..
He then calls the FBI and makes a deal to help
find the bomb, if certain conditions can be met,
namely, his girlfriend is taken out of harms
way. In his alternate future, she was blown to
pieces by terrorist rigged body bomb and
disintegrated in an atomic explosion.
Bottom line: Based on the Philip K. Dick story
"The Golden Man", Next (2007) has an
interesting premise, but a very disappointing
ending. Well, maybe NEXT time. Wait
for this one on video.
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