Heard it All Before
Adam Cassidy (Liam Hemsworth) finds himself without a job and an ill father to support when he is sacked by CEO Nicolas Wyatt (Gary Oldman) along with his team when Wyatt takes exception to Adam's arrogance during a presentation. But after a night out on the company's credit card he didn't hand back and racking up 16K in debt he is summoned back to Wyatt's office where Adam is ordered to get a job working for rival company run by Jock Goddard (Harrison Ford) and steal company secrets for him which in return his father, his debts and his future will all be taken care of. Having reluctantly accepted Adam soon finds that the rewards may not be worth the stress and danger of his duplicity when the FBI shows up at his door whilst he falls for Emma Jennings (Amber Heard) who works for Goddard.
Little phrases can grab your attention, when the character Dr. Judith Bolton, a behavioural psychologist, uses words such as "aspire" and phrases such as "You have to fit in to get in" it grabs your attention. And "Paranoia" is a movie full of keywords and phrases all strategically placed to grab your attention, make you think and aspire to a life of wealth which we are shown. And do you know what it works you buy into the phrases and philosophy of business which is being presented to us and combined with hot young stars who look good in and out of their clothes and undoubtedly "Paranoia" grabs your attention.
But the words and the looks are backed up by gravitas because here is a movie with a nice number of respected industry names and faces. Gary Oldman, Harrison Ford, Richard Dreyfuss and Embeth Davidtz all bring with them a level of respect which means even if their parts in this movie are small you still listen to what they say and watch what they do. And when you don't have these respected stars or hot, young talent what you have is some flashy computer graphics alongside one of those soundtracks which pounds along to make you think this is a well paced movie.
But what about the storyline to "Paranoia"? Well yes we have the high tech, fast paced world of mobile technology but this is another one of those corporate espionage movies where some poor sap finds himself drawn in, over their heads and in danger before finding a way to outsmart those who think they are smarter than he is. It is typical but with all the other ingredients it is a crowd pleaser but not one which stands out from the ever growing crowd of other so called "smart thrillers".
What this all boils down to is that "Paranoia" undeniably has its appeal and for the right generation who go wild for Liam Hemsworth and Amber Heard it is sure to please. But for me it just felt like a movie I had watched 10, 20 years earlier but dressed up with more modern technology and featuring the current hot talent.