Source Code

‘Source Code’: Thoughtful Thrills, 8 Minutes at a Time

Source Code
Jake Gyllenhaal tries to explain the unexplainable to Michelle Monaghan. (Summit Entertainment)

After a successful bow at SXSW a couple of weeks ago, ‘Source Code’ is now unleashed for your viewing pleasure. It’s definitely worth a look.

Is Source Code an apocalyptic Groundhog Day? It’s very tempting to call it that, simply because the premise of the two films are, at first blush, similar: a man must keep re-living a limited period of time in order to accomplish a goal. In the case of Groundhog Dog, cynical weatherman Bill Murray has to become a better person. In the case of Source Code, however, the stakes are quite a bit higher, and the ambitions of the film are greater as well.

Colter Stevens (Jake Gyllenhaal) snaps to attention on a train, sitting across from Christina (Michelle Monaghan), a woman who seems to know him, but calls him by a different name. Colter is disoriented and confused; he has no idea where he is and how he got there.

Eventually, Colter learns that he’s on a military mission to uncover the identify of a bomber on the train; the bomber is believed to have targeted Chicago for a terrorist attack, and time is of the essence. Through a blitzkrieg explanation — something about quantum mechanics, muttered by a brilliant scientist / civilian (Jeffrey Wright) overseeing the mission — Colter is told that he can be sent back into the mind and body of a man on the train, but only for 8 minutes. The mission’s overseers, will keep sending him back for the 8-minute loop, and he must piece together enough clues to be able to catch the culprit. He’s fed only a limited amount of information before each 8-minute loop, through the calm, urgent voice of military officer Carol Goodwin (Vera Farmiga).

You can read my entire review at Twitch.

‘Source Code’ opens wide today across the Metroplex.