The Adjustment Bureau (2011) – 6/10 romantic thriller movie review

Cast / crew
Screenplay Writer, Producer and Director: George Nolfi
Writer (Original Story) Adjustment Team: Philip K. Dick
Producer: Michael Hackett
Producer: Bill Carraro
Producer: Chris Moore
Matt Damon: David Norris
Emily Blunt: Elise Sellas
Anthony Mackie: Harry Mitchell
John Slattery: Richardson
Michael Kelly: Charlie Traynor
Terence Stamp: Thompson

The Adjustment Bureau (2011)

David Norris is a successful young politician but then he meets a beautiful, charming dancer, Elise, and all his drive and energy become diverted into chasing the girl of his dreams.


Now you can see why they made this movie as it contains a superficially positive message about making best use of our free will. Except the movie doesn’t have that message at all. Firstly, the love story is the result of an earlier, subsequently abandoned plan, so their irresistible romance wasn’t free will in the first place. Secondly, even though our hero is given a good reason to abandon his love for an arguably greater good, he chooses his own feelings over reason. Put another way, he behaves selfishly. His choice, of course, but that highlights the problem with most considerations of free will, in movies especially. It boils down to satisfying yourself, ‘following your heart’, being selfish. That’s why the message is only superficially positive but this deliberate provoking of thought is also why The Adjustment Bureau is an interesting movie. At the end of the day, how well this movie works for you depends on whether you get wrapped up in the love story and, while I wasn’t exactly convinced of their chemistry, I did get involved and so I liked it. Special mention for some of the weakest poster artwork for any major Hollywood movie ever.

This movie contains a single sexual swear word, mild adult dialogue, mild unpleasant scenes and a discreet sex scene

Classified 12A by BBFC. Persons under the age of 12 must be accompanied by an adult.


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