The Anomaly

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The Anomaly
Directed byNoel Clarke
Produced by
  • James Harris
  • Mark Lane
  • Noel Clarke
Written by
Simon Lewis
Noel Clarke
Music byTom Linden
CinematographyDavid Katznelson
Edited byTommy Boulding
  • Unstoppable Entertainment
  • The Tea Shop & Film Co.
Distributed byUniversal Pictures
Release date
  • 19 June 2014 (2014-06-19) (Edinburgh International Film Festival)
  • 4 July 2014 (2014-07-04)
Running time
97 minutes
CountryUnited Kingdom
Box office£11.6 million

The Anomaly is a 2014 British science fiction action thriller film directed and co-produced by and starring Noel Clarke and also featuring Ian Somerhalder and Luke Hemsworth.


The film is set in a futuristic setting, where significant advances in science and technology have been made. Ex-soldier Ryan Reeve (Noel Clarke) wakes up in the back of a van[1] next to a young boy, Alex (Art Parkinson), who is being held prisoner. Strangely, the boy seems to think Reeve is the kidnapper though he has no memory of ever having seen the boy before. After freeing the boy and attempting to figure out what has happened to him, he blacks out again and awakes in a room with a mysterious young man named Harkin Langham (Ian Somerhalder), who seems to think he is someone else.

When Langham discovers who he really is, he disables Reeve and knocks him out. Reeve then wakes up in a mysterious bedroom having sex with a beautiful young woman (Alexis Knapp). The girl identifies herself as a prostitute named Dana, who seems to remember meeting and engaging in sexual activity with a much more violent and sociopathic version of Reeve. He tries to explain his predicament, but she remains skeptical. He asks her to come with him, but she says she cannot leave as she is the "property" of a Russian gangster named Sergio. Reeve offers to free her if she will help him solve the mystery that his life has become. The two manage to escape, but Reeve again loses consciousness when the mind control system reboots.

He must work out what is happening in bursts of exactly nine minutes and forty-seven seconds, as the control and conscious awareness of his body is repeatedly being hijacked by another person. He teams up with the mysterious "Dana" (Alexis Knapp) as he battles a conspiracy known as "Anomaly" led by Harkin Langham (Ian Somerhalder).



The film was produced in the United Kingdom in 2013. Clarke performed his own stunts, modifying his diet and receiving fight training for the purpose.[3]


The first official trailer was released on 19 April 2014. The film was shown at the Edinburgh Film Festival in June 2014[4][5] and entered general release in the UK and the Republic of Ireland through Universal Pictures on 4 July.[6]


The film was unanimously panned by critics, with a Rotten Tomatoes approval rating of 0% based on 16 reviews,[7] making it the worst reviewed British film of 2014. On Metacritic, it has a score of 27 out of 100 from 7 critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews".[8] Mark Kermode of The Observer called it "ambitious but uneven".[9] Other critics described it as "hilariously naff science-fiction mularkey"[10] and "a peculiar Brit flick best described as a noble failure"[11] and referred to "tangled conception and tortuously opaque execution"[5] and to "meag[re] rewards for those willing to endure its laborious convolutions".[4]


  1. ^ Jake Perlman, "'The Anomaly' trailer: Noe sci-fi action thriller", Inside Movies, Entertainment Weekly, 16 April 2014.
  2. ^ Nathalie Raffray, "Magician Ali Cook turns spy for Noel Clarke’s The Anomaly", Ham & High, 10 July 2014.
  3. ^ "Noel Clarke gave up pizzas for The Anomaly", Belfast Telegraph, 6 July 2014 (video).
  4. ^ a b Neil Young, "'The Anomaly': Edinburgh Review", The Hollywood Reporter, 18 June 2014.
  5. ^ a b Guy Lodge, "Film Review: 'The Anomaly': Derivative and incomprehensible, Noel Clarke's shoestring sci-fi actioner doesn't live up to its title", Variety, 17 June 2014.
  6. ^ "'The Anomaly': Noel Clarke fights time in sci-fi puzzle", cinema, Euronews, 7 July 2014.
  7. ^ "The Anomaly". Rotten Tomatoes/Flixster. Retrieved 18 August 2015.
  8. ^ "The Anomaly". Metacritic. Retrieved 11 October 2015.
  9. ^ Mark Kermode, "The Anomaly review – ambitious but uneven sci-fi romp", The Observer, 5 July 2014.
  10. ^ Allan Hunter, "The Anomaly: Cringe-worthy confusion paying homage to all sci-fi films", The Express, 4 July 2014.
  11. ^ David Edwards, "The Anomaly review: Noel Clarke delivers a peculiar film best described as a noble failure", The Mirror, 4 July 2014.

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