Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||D. J. Caruso|
|Produced by||Alex Kurtzman
|Screenplay by||John Glenn
Travis Adam Wright
|Story by||Dan McDermott|
Billy Bob Thornton
|Music by||Brian Tyler|
|Editing by||Jim Page|
|Studio||K/O Paper Products
|Distributed by||DreamWorks Pictures|
|Running time||118 minutes|
|Box office||$178,966,569 (worldwide)|
Eagle Eye is a 2008 American thriller film directed by D. J. Caruso and starring Shia LaBeouf and Michelle Monaghan. The two portray a young man and a single mother who are brought together and coerced by an anonymous caller (Julianne Moore) into carrying out a plan by a possible terrorist organization. The film was released in regular 35 mm theaters and IMAX theaters.
Jerry Shaw (Shia LaBeouf) is a Stanford University dropout who learns that his identical twin brother Ethan, a US Air Force first lieutenant, has been killed. Following the funeral, Jerry is surprised to find $750,000 in his bank account. He later finds his apartment filled with weapons, ammonium nitrate, classified DOD documents, and forged passports. He receives a phone call from a woman who says the FBI is about to arrest him and that he needs to run.
Disbelieving, Jerry is caught by the FBI and interrogated by Supervising Agent Tom Morgan (Billy Bob Thornton). While Morgan is conferring with Air Force OSI Special Agent Zoe Pérez (Rosario Dawson), the woman on the phone arranges for Jerry's escape and directs him to Rachel Holloman (Michelle Monaghan), a single mother. The woman on the phone is coercing Rachel by threatening her son Sam (Cameron Boyce), who is en route to the Kennedy Center with his school band. The woman on the phone helps the two avoid the Chicago police and FBI, with the ability to control networked devices, including traffic lights, mobile phones, automated cranes, and even power lines.
Meanwhile, the woman on the phone redirects a powerful DOD crystalline explosive (hexamethylene) to a gemcutter who cuts and fits it to a necklace. Another man (Anthony Azizi) is manipulated into stealing Sam's trumpet from Chicago and fitting the crystal's sonic trigger into the piping before forwarding it to Sam in Washington, D.C.
Agent Perez is summoned by Secretary of Defense George Callister (Michael Chiklis) to be read into Ethan's job at the Pentagon. Ethan monitored the DOD's top secret intelligence-gathering supercomputer, the Autonomous Reconnaissance Intelligence Integration Analyst (ARIIA; voiced by Julianne Moore). Callister leaves Perez with Major William Bowman (Anthony Mackie) and ARIIA to sort out the Ethan Shaw investigation. Simultaneously, Rachel and Jerry learn that their mysterious woman is actually ARIIA, and she has "activated" them under the Constitution's authorization to recruit civilians for the national defense.
Perez and Bowman find evidence Ethan Shaw hid in ARIIA's chamber the night he died. After they leave to debrief Secretary Callister, ARIIA smuggles Jerry and Rachel into her observation theater under the Pentagon. Both groups learn that after her recommendation was ignored and a botched operation in Balochistan resulted in the deaths of American citizens, ARIIA concluded that "to prevent more bloodshed, the executive branch must be removed." Acting on behalf of "We the People", and citing the Declaration of Independence ("whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it"), ARIIA acted in compliance with Section 216 of the Patriot Act which "allows us to circumvent probable cause in the face of a national security threat, in this case, the chain of command itself."
Too late realized, Jerry has been brought by ARIIA to circumvent biometric locks his twin placed to prevent the system from realizing Operation Guillotine, a military simulation of how to keep the government running with the loss of all presidential successors. Because of Secretary Callister's concurrence with ARIIA's abort recommendation regarding Balochistan, he has been chosen as the designated survivor after the hexamethylene detonates at the State of the Union address (SOTU).
One of ARIIA's agents (Nick Searcy) extracts Rachel from the Pentagon and gives her a dress and the hexamethylene necklace to wear to the SOTU. Sam's school band has also been redirected to the United States Capitol to play for the president, bringing the trigger in Sam's trumpet and the explosive together. Jerry is recaptured by Agent Morgan, who has become convinced of Jerry's innocence. Though Morgan sacrifices himself to stop an armed MQ-9 Reaper sent by ARIIA, he first gives Jerry his weapon and ID with which to gain entrance to the Capitol. Arriving in the House Chamber, Jerry fires the handgun in the air to disrupt the concert before being shot and wounded by the Secret Service.
Days later, Secretary Callister reports that ARIIA has been decommissioned and that he recommends against building another; the Shaw twins, and Agents Perez and Morgan receive awards for their actions; and in the final scene, Jerry attends Sam's birthday party, earning thanks and a kiss from Rachel.
- Shia LaBeouf as Jerry Shaw, and his deceased twin brother Ethan Shaw.
- Michelle Monaghan as Rachel Holloman, a woman who helps Jerry stop ARIIA.
- Julianne Moore as the voice of the super computer ARIIA aka the "unknown woman".
- Rosario Dawson as Zoë Perez, Air Force Office of Special Investigations (OSI) Agent.
- Michael Chiklis as George Callister, the US Secretary of Defense.
- Anthony Mackie as Major William Bowman
- Ethan Embry as Toby Grant, FBI.
- Billy Bob Thornton as Tom Morgan, FBI.
- Anthony Azizi as Ranim Khalid
- Cameron Boyce as Sam Holloman, Rachel's son.
Screenwriter Dan McDermott wrote the original script for Eagle Eye based on an idea by Steven Spielberg who had been inspired by Isaac Asimov's short story "All the Troubles of the World." The studio DreamWorks then bought McDermott's script and set up the project to potentially be directed by Spielberg. When the director became busy with Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, he dropped out of the project. Director D. J. Caruso, who directed the 1996 TV series High Incident under Spielberg's executive production, replaced the director in helming Eagle Eye, with Spielberg remaining as executive producer. In June 2007, actor LaBeouf who was involved in Spielberg's and Caruso's 2007 film Disturbia and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, re-joined the director and executive producer to star as the lead in Eagle Eye. McDermott's script was rewritten by screenwriters John Glenn, Travis Wright, and Hillary Seitz in preparation for production. Filming began on November 6, 2007 and wrapped in February 2008. The film's visual effects were created by Sony Pictures Imageworks.
Caruso said by the time the film came to fruition twelve years later, "the technology had finally caught up to the storytelling... Everybody has a BlackBerry on their belt, and we think we're constantly being tracked. It's less science fiction than when Steven Spielberg conceived it." Caruso wanted to bring a gritty, 1970s-era sensibility to the film. Accordingly, a key chase scene in a high-tech package-processing hub on conveyor belts was shot without the use of computer-generated imagery. "It was like Chutes and Ladders for adults. It was pretty dangerous, and a lot of fun." While filming the scene, Monaghan suffered a welt after a cable brushed her neck and Caruso hit his head on a protruding bolt, requiring stitches.
The music to Eagle Eye was written by composer Brian Tyler, who recorded the score with an 88-piece ensemble of the Hollywood Studio Symphony at the Sony Scoring Stage. The session was interrupted by the Chino Hills earthquake on July 29, 2008—and a recording of the quake hitting the scoring stage is online.
The official movie website features an ARG type of gameplay system to promote the film. The voice previewed behind the phone in multiple trailers contacts the player, placing them in unique experiences. This has been called the "Eagle Eye Freefall Experience". While official cast listings do not list the name of the actress behind the mysterious voice featured in the film and trailers, Rosario Dawson confirmed at the Hollywood premiere that it belongs to Julianne Moore.
Eagle Eye received negative reviews from critics (with some being overwhelmingly so), primarily for its implausible storyline. As of 2 May 2012, the review aggregation site Rotten Tomatoes reported that 26% of critics gave the film positive reviews based on 178 reviews, with the consensus that the film is "a preposterously-plotted thriller that borrows heavily from other superior films." Metacritic reported the film had an average score of 43 out of 100, based on 28 reviews—indicating mixed or average reviews.
Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times gave Eagle Eye a score of two stars out of four, saying: "The word 'preposterous' is too moderate to describe Eagle Eye. This film contains not a single plausible moment after the opening sequence, and that's borderline. It's not an assault on intelligence. It's an assault on consciousness." James Berardinelli of ReelViews gave the film one and a half stars out of four, saying: "This movie tests the viewing public's tolerance for enduring crass stupidity when the payoff is a series of repetitive, ADD-infected chase scenes. Director D.J. Caruso does a moderately good job of hiding how incredibly dumb this screenplay is by keeping things moving at such a whirlwind pace that a lot more seems to be happening than actually is. In reality, the chase scenes don't mean anything because they don't advance the plot—it's mice on a treadmill, running and running and not getting anywhere." The Hollywood Reporter called it a "slick, silly techno-thriller" and "Even those who surrender all disbelief at the door will be hard pressed not to smirk at some of wildly improbable plotting."
Josh Rosenblatt of The Austin Chronicle enjoyed the film, calling it "good, manic fun plus a heavy dose of political intrigue adding up to two hours of clamorous, mind-numbing nonsense." Calling it "The Transporter 2 on crack." William Arnold of the Seattle Post-Intelligencer also gave Eagle Eye a positive review, remarking that it's "engrossing as an intellectual puzzle" and "a solid thriller." Mark Bell of Film Threat said: "the film isn't a complete waste of your time [...] but don't expect anything brilliant." Neely Tucker of The Washington Post said that Eagle Eye is "sometimes entertaining" but "doesn't have much to say." Robert Koehler of Variety felt that the film's "first 35 minutes sizzle" but "the story [becomes] near-parody in the final act."
In its opening weekend, Eagle Eye grossed $29.1 million in 3,510 theaters in the United States and Canada, reaching the first place position at the box office. As of February 15, 2009, it has grossed $178 million worldwide—$101.4 million in the United States and Canada and $76.6 million in other territories. The budget of the film was $80 million.
Eagle Eye was released on DVD and Blu-ray only in select stores on December 26, 2008, exactly three months after its theatrical release, September 26, 2008. In the first week on the DVD sales chart, Eagle Eye sold 182,592 units which translated to $3.3m in revenue. In the second week, however, sales rose tremendously to 1,044,682 for that week, opening at #1 and acquiring revenue of $18,862,151 for that week. As per the latest figures[when?], 2,181,959 units have been sold, bringing in $38,008,436 in revenue. This does not include Blu-ray sales/DVD rentals.
A mobile game based on the film was developed and published by Magmic Games. It was released for BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, BREW, and Java ME devices prior to the film's launch in early September. There are also two games on the film's web site.
- List of films featuring surveillance
- Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
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- Eagle Eye (2008) - Full cast and crew
- Michael Fleming; Dah Josue (2007-06-25). "'Disturbia' duo set for 'Eagle Eye'". Variety. Retrieved 2007-11-13.
- Nellie Andreeva; Borys Kit (2007-11-06). "For most part, the shows go on". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2007-11-13.[dead link]
- Carly Mayberry and Borys Kit (2008-01-08). "'Eagle' lands Chiklis in cabinet post". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on 2008-05-27. Retrieved 2008-01-08.
- Carolyn Giardina (2008-07-01). "G-Force' is with Imageworks". The Hollywood Reporter (The Nielsen Company). Archived from the original on 2008-07-14. Retrieved 2008-07-01.
- Vary, Adam B. "Fall Movie Summer Preview, September: Eagle Eye." Entertainment Weekly, Iss. #1007/1008, August 22/29, 2008, pg.52.
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- Eagle Eye review, Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times, September 25, 2008
- Eagle Eye review, James Berardinelli, ReelViews, September 2008
- Film Review: Eagle Eye, Michael Rechtshaffen, The Hollywood Reporter, September 25, 2008
- Eagle Eye review, Josh Rosenblatt, The Austin Chronicle, September 2008
- Eagle Eye review, William Arnold, Seattle Post-Intelligencer, September 2008
- Eagle Eye review, Mark Bell, Film Threat, September 2008
- Eagle Eye review, Neely Tucker, The Washington Post, September 2008
- Odessy Eagle Eye review, Robert Koehler, Variety, September 2008
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- Eagle Eye DVD Sales
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- "Eagle Eye: The Game".
- "Movie tie-in".
- Official website
- Eagle Eye at the Internet Movie Database
- Eagle Eye at AllRovi
- Eagle Eye at Box Office Mojo
- Eagle Eye at Rotten Tomatoes
- Eagle Eye at Metacritic
- Freefall Experience
- Scoring Session Photo Gallery at ScoringSessions.com