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Code 46
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Customer Reviews:

  • por favor, no mas
    This is one of those movies where the screen goes black and you sit there and say to yourself, can I get the last 2 hours of my life back? The sex scenes, if you can call them that, are repulsive and can't even distract you from the utterly mind-numbing storyline, if you can say this has one. Three words are beaten to death in this movie: papel, palabra and cover. I am saddened by Tim Robbins' decline....more info
  • A fun heavy converstion based film
    Over all this will only be liked by poeple who whish theycould write movies. I thought the movie moved along a suprising quick pace. The code only comes up once if I remember it correcrtly, it brings up a intresting thought or two. Overall I think the movie was overlooked Tim was really good in it....more info
  • Dreadful movie
    I like Tim Robbins a lot. Unfortunately, his talent was utterly wasted in this dreadful movie. What's so fascinating about adultery? The whole concept of people speak English with a little Chinese and Spanish thrown in is ridiculous. Stay away from this one.

    Your trusted reviewer, as always ...more info
  • One of My Favorite Sci-Fi Films
    Superb acting. Clever writing. A haunting soundtrack. This film is a piece of art. Enjoy it....more info
  • Incomplete and Indiscreet.
    What's interesting about this film is that almost all of the blurbs and synopses of it give it more plot than it actually has. Most of them are true in that they describe roughly what happens, but they're misrepresentative in that they don't really show how little actually happens in this movie.

    A guy named William is investigating fraudalent "papelles" when he meets a woman named Maria, who he falls in love with. This is bad because due to the futuristic society where clones can cause problems with genetic discrepancies, they shouldn't breed. Thus they aren't allowed to be together and the evil society hunts them down while they attempt to run.

    It's basically a series of genre conceits, which is alright except it's loosely cut--more like stapled--together with a loose assortment of ideas and a really bad voice-over. Most importantly, it doesn't go anywhere. At times it seems like it wants to have some interesting ideas, but then it decides not to explore it, instead just going on and letting us assume that this story means something.

    I only found two things interesting with it: the abuses of authority William has when he has the virus and the potential Oedipal nature of his relationship with Maria. Neither were explored because it seems the writer didn't care. All we know is that these two people are apparently in love (despite next to no chemistry) and that somehow it needs to be illegal to warn about a society set too strictly. The only theme is the importance of living up to risks, but even that seems to be underdeveloped... nothing really goes anywhere here.

    To be perfectly honest, it seems almost as if this movie goes on a tight budget until the money runs out... and then the filmmakers dropped everything and cut it together using serrated scissors in a dark room. It looks like everyone involved WANTS to really explore this brave new world, but nobody ultimately had the resources. However, it's practically pointless to try to think about what this film could have been, considering it pretty much isn't anything anyway.

    --PolarisDiB...more info
  • Huxlian Dystopia + empathy virus = not worth 2 hours
    I watched this because it got a good review by one of my favorite reviewers. What a let down. This film is really paced so slowly and has such contrived interpersonal character development that I almost turned it off--which I never, ever do.

    There are some novel concepts being played with here, but the execution is simply uninteresting. For example, the director uses a smattering of foreign language into the characters' dialogue, as if to say "In the future we will use a language that is a hybrid of all current languages." They call boys and girls chicos and chicas, throw in some mandarin greetings, etc. The problem is that it comes off sounding like all those annoying plastic people you know that throw in foreign phrases to sound cultured--except on a junior high level--sort of like saying all the punch lines of your hallway insults in pig-latin. Exactly.

    The leads are so flat and unemotional that their love (if you can call it that) seems so awkward and contrived. Having the leads play so flat has to be a deliberate directorial call, sort of like Gattaca, but there is none of the suspense or sheen that makes Gattaca interesting apart from its individual characters.

    Any sense of drama or love or hate or fear, or any real emotion is so subdued that it feels like the film itself is on Percodan.

    The only real drama that becomes interesting is a small side issue where Tim Robbins gives fake credentials to an 'outsider' that he met on the way in. There was some real emotion there, but not enough to carry two hours.

    If you are really into dystopian futures as a genre, then you should watch it, but for the average viewer, no thanks....more info
  • Don't Worry, It's Only A Simple Head Code.
    There are some terrific ideas in Code 46, (along with wonderful, brooding music and intoxicating visuals), but they never deliver on their promise. This is the most lethargic and droopy view of the future ever conceived; if we are to depend on Tim Robbins and Samantha Morton to save us from totalitarianism to come, the outlook is bleak.

    The premise has to do with genetic "purity," which is assured by state-scrutinized and authorized reproduction. Violators are prosecuted. (Sound familiar?) The effects on society resulting from such a homogenization are never examined. (Indeed, a scrubbed and cleansed gene pool would mean no Beethoven, Van Gogh, or Churchill.)

    Also great fun is the notion of viruses enabling people to excel in unexpected ways, for example, William (Robbins), is given an "empathy" virus which makes it possible for him to sneak into the minds of hapless victims. (Great at parties!) Maria (Morton), experiments with a virus that allows her to sing in a language she doesn't know. (Audiences love it, but she's frustrated because she can't understand herself!) It's whacky.

    Robbins attempts to pass off boyish charm as acting - again, and Morton should have stood on director Winterbottom's shoulders in all scenes in which the two of them appear together. (Robbins would be advised to spend the rest of his career making movies exclusively with Uma Thurman.) Considering the two of them are quite literally throwing away their lives for each other, there should be passion, as it is, there isn't enough heat between them to set a Ray Bradbury novel on fire.

    Like Brazil and Bladerunner, Code 46 offers a view of the future that is at once retro and sleekly forward looking. In those two classics the approach succeeds, in Code 46 it does not. The cars of Code 46 look like they just rolled off the lot, the watch Robbins wears, and barters, looks like he got it from his dad, the subway Maria rides is neither vintage nor advanced.

    Creating a sci-fi flick is tough, and very expensive, but a sense of time and place matters. Code 46 tries to dodge the bullet by pretending that desert sand dunes have melded with cityscapes just as all the earth's languages have melded. The international flavor and mixture of races is interesting, and, like the gene fascism and viruses, could have been great were they to have been developed. Unfortunately, they weren't. What remains is a love story that has no future....more info
  • It's about more than emotion vs. science
    I saw this movie some years ago and liked it a lot. What I remember most about it is something that is not mentioned in the last ten or so reviews: that it is not only government that has taken away liberties in this dystopian world, but also, and critically, private corporations.

    Every significant movement in this future is sanctioned by insurance companies ("do you have cover?"). If you don't have coverage (i.e. insurance coverage) for your trip to the grocery, you can't go. (the papelles were proof of cover). In this way, the people have signed away, contractually, a most basic civil liberty, privacy and the freedom to move about without being monitored.

    Of course there's the sociological/scientific foundation or justification for this in the story, but what remained in my memory is how this apparently came to be in a western, essentially democratic world. That's what stuck with me in this movie and it's an important concept for people to be aware of. You have liberties. Don't just give them away for sake of convenience....more info
  • FRACTURED, THOUGH BEAUTIFUL
    I enjoyed the quiet desperation of the main protaganists ( Tim Robbins, and Samantha Morton ) in this visually stunning film. Still I found the plot to be under-developed, and somewhat derivative of GATTACA, BLADERUNNER, LOGAN'S RUN and HARDWARE. The quiet sensuality of the illegal affair between the main characters is a nice, though again, evocative counterpoint to the dehumanized, prohibitive, and coldly sanctioned society of the privileged world that William ( Robbins ) is a part of. One of the most glaring problems with the movie's premise was why wouldn't the-powers-that-be in this neatly packaged, little world simply forbid conception between clones with similar genetic patterns, instead of 'love' altogether?

    The music was quite good, and helped the choppy plot tremendously. The camerawork was exceptional, and Robbins and Morton were convincing as fateful lovers. There is imagery in the film that will stay with you well after the movie ends, and that make up for some the story's basic problems. It is worth seeing....more info
  • Interesting world, uncompelling story
    The world in which the movie takes place is interestingly rich. We see a world where all cultures have merged, and Spanish words have passed into English to describe common objects (papel, palabra). The world is a bit of a dystopia in that there are two classes of people: those who are inside, and those on the outside. Biotechnology and cloning permeate everyday life. This leads to interesting and slightly esoteric technology, and seemingly has led to legislation regarding human relations. Code 46 essentially outlaws certain types of incest only possible with widespread cloning. And here is where the story begins - and where I jump off.

    Although all of the above makes for great science fiction, I found myself wholly unconcerned by the main characters' predicament. They fall in love, but their relation is so foggy and empty that I disbelieved their willingness to sacrifice anything, let alone what they do end up sacrificing, to pursue the relation. Unwilling to believe the story, I was unable to enjoy the movie very much.

    Despite its shortcomings, I do wish there were more movies like this, set in a believeable future, rich and complex and uncertain....more info

  • no birth control in 2050
    jeez, here's a solution- liason, don't breed. if the future can give you an empathy virus, learn a language through a virus, etc., they can do contraception through a virus while you want to be with the woman who is your mom's clone.

    nice music though, great scenery....more info
  • Code 46 is Lame
    I'm an avid movie watcher so I had to make a comment regarding this horrible movie.

    Don't waste your time with this film. If this movie has a story, it's not clearly indicated. The film is exceptionally slow moving. The movie is equivalent to turning on MTV without the sound or glamour--as it is nothing more than a montage of pale, stark images. This movie fails on all fronts of what makes a good movie. That is to say: Bad directing, bad acting, bad screenplay, and bad special effects.




    ...more info
  • Code 46 is now
    Code 46 is a movie set in the near future. The idea is that the Earth has been damaged to the point where living outside is hell. Living in the cities, under cover, is only for those who have wealth and employment. Moving between these cities is only allowed with special visas known as papeless and you can't even leave a city to, let us say, study a rain forest without one.
    Tim Robbins character is a Seattle investigator sent to Shanghai to find somebody who is making fake visas. In the end he happens to fall in love and break one of the major laws of society. Code 46 is a law against inbreeding, a major fear in a culture where cloning is common. So love is not outlawed. It just has to be with the right partner.
    The setting is a delightfully dark one. Most of the people work and play indoors or at night, a virus can help you learn a language, a skill or even program you with a certain reaction or behavior, and most of the people use a mixture of English, Spanish and Chinese. It is rated R for sex and nudity, some of it graphic, and is 93 minutes long. The extras on the disc include a feature about the movie, some deleted scenes and the original trailer. A must see for any sci-fi or dystopia fan.
    ...more info
  • Creating sci-fi from remnants
    Lured by Tim Robbin's taste for the offbeat "Indie" (e.g., Jacob's Ladder"), Code 46 offered far less than it promises. More a mood piece than science fiction, writer Boyce is not Gattaca's Niccol in his piecing together of Gattaca sprinkled with Blade Runner. Nor does Code 46 have the chilling claustrophobia of 1984.
    Instead, although acted well, storylines are as vague as the form of the monolithic government that enacted the code. Compared with other sci-fi that offer more holistic views of alternate realities, Winterbottom's is fractured and at times nonsensical.
    I am warned when, after a film, I say to my wife "What did we just watch". Paraphrasing Gina Davis in The Fly, be warned, be very warned....more info
  • Mesmerising, bleak
    This is a mesmering film, mainly because of the way it is shot, and the music. Yes, an ambient film, but that does it less justice than it deserves. Robbins is ok, wooden but that's his character, as the girl says at some point, he definitely risks having a good time.. and who are we to question their chemistry? This is a post-global warming world, bleak cityscapes, brilliantly filmed, and quite skilfully raises interesting and universal questions about relationships through the plot.. for example, why are people attracted to some particular people and not to others?? What strange mix produces instant recognition among strangers?? What do men see in women, and vice versa? Despite the plot issues which critical reviewers have pointed out, I am inclined to give this movie the benefit of the doubt, mainly because it is hard to forget. The only flaw is Samantha Morton's last line, which was totally unnecessary. Overall, a brilliant film. Perhaps not a GREAT film, but brilliant in the visual and auditory sense, combining just the right elements of raw realistic landscape with a sense of aesthetic elegance. Intense!!...more info
  • intriguing
    I really had no idea what to make of this film after seeing the trailer, but I thought the premise sounded intriguing.

    For the first half hour or so, I was starting to wonder if an intriguing premise was all the film had. Just because it was sci-fi, I expected some action and excitement, but this film had more than that to offer. Although there was not a great chase scene or any gunfights (as Hollywood has led us to believe all good sci-fi movies should have), the film gave me a lot more to think about than any action-packed sci-fi film. And, if you really get into the film (as I did), there is some suspense towards the end.

    I can't resist comparing it to Gattaca, in that it deals more with ethical situations in a futuristic world. Although it was a little slow in parts and the pairing of Robbins and Morton is a little unsettling, I loved this movie. The little details, like the way languages had converged, give the viewer something to think about during the slower parts of this brilliant film. Although the romantic pairing was awkward, I think both actors performed quite well in general. Also, the soundtrack complements the futuristic perfectly.

    If you like to think, watch Code 46. If you're looking for a Will Smith style sci-fi blockbuster, keep looking. ...more info
  • Gattica + Eternal Sunshine + Oryx and Crake
    I really loved this movie, from the very first moment. It has themes touched on in both movies, but handled in a new way. If you liked either movie I think you'll really enjoy Code 46.

    What I especially found compelling about this movie was underlying love story, but I also found a lot of the "sci-fi" twists refreshing. I loved how things were subtlely left for you to discover (like day and night reversed) w/o shoving all this sci-fi doctrine down your throught...

    Books - I'd just like throw in a book recommendation. "Oryx and Crake" by Margaret Atwood. If you're into the whole sci-fi genre that deals with alternate futures and where science may be leading us......more info
  • almost great
    If you liked "Gattaca"," Blade Runner" and "I am Legend", then this movie would be highly recommended.
    The effects are not worth mentioning; they should have used different cars and different clothing; this would have made a big difference. In the meantime the dialogue and the story is all very interesting and worth your time.
    ...more info
  • Just ok, good concept, just didn't capture my attention.
    As the reviewer prior to me mentions, I guess they ran out of birth control in 2050, but I guess we could write that off as "love". Point number 2, he goes back to his lover even after finding out that they are genetically related...esentially she could be his mom according to the movie...AAAAAAHHHHHHHH...EEEEWWWW!!!!! Screams odipus rex, and inbreeding. He has the "Arkansas" genetic code, or potentially the appalatian country gentic code. Tim robbins did a decent job in this movie, the only big name in it. Bottom line, in a world of genetically engineered people, You should be cautious if the gene pool is small, either that or just completely lack morals. A movie you might rent, but not a must. ...more info
  • What was this movie trying to say?
    This movie has very realistic, great-looking sets, good music, and accomplished actors. It is also rather plodding, relying on scenery to take the place of dialog, and meaningful looks to take the place of character development.

    And the movie's message? To me it seemed to be that the government doesn't want you to have a baby with your sister, so it is illegal. Gotta say, if I interpreted that correctly, I'm gonna have to side with the government on this one.

    Maybe codes 1-45 were more interesting. ;-)...more info
  • Lack of Sensibility
    The director has the ambition and vision of making a different kind of love stories; however, he lacked the craftsmanship and sensibility to achieve his goals and failed miserably.

    From the cinematography point of view, the movie is under exposure and in a tint of depressing green, which makes view a visual challenge.

    The direction is so lack of sensibility, which is a crucial element to deliver a romantic story. The dynamic between the two lovers (Robbins and Morton) just isn't convincing enough for audiences to believe that these two characters can actually fall in love for each other.

    Tim Robins is a wonderful actor, but he alone cannot save a film from disaster. This is probably one of the worst movies I watched in the past few years. It actually made me feel physically nauseous (...not being exaggerated or cynical)....more info
  • "I remember you from my dream, my birthday dream"
    Visually original and with some fine performances from Samantha Morton and Tim Robbins, Code 46 could probably be forgiven for being a cluttered, and rather confusing mishmash of ideas, themes and genres. The movie uses the cityscapes from the world as it is now, to convey a future of harshly, prohibited genetic matching, where travel is a luxury for those people living "inside," where a person's memory can be wiped in an instant, and where society is controlled by special codified passports called "papelles," which are de rigor for those individuals who want to move through the safe but administered urban zones.

    William Geld (a really good Tim Robbins) is an insurance investigator who goes to Shanghai to investigate a factory where counterfeit papelles are being produced. His inquiries cast suspicion on Maria (a frantic Samantha Morton), and the two have a brief, intense affair, and eventually fall in love. In a system which potential parents are screened and unauthorized pregnancies terminated and supported by a technology of selective memory erasure, William and Maria discover that they are not permitted to cohabitate.

    William and Maria have both violated code 46; a strictly policed law intended to prevent any accidental or deliberate genetically incestuous reproduction. How William and Maria navigate through these maze of restrictions, and the choices they have to make between comfort and freedom form the thematic core of the movie. It's probably much harder for them to remember their relationship than it is for them to forget it.

    It takes about 30 minutes for anything to actually make any sense in this movie. Up until then, the narrative is so confusing, that most viewers will be scratching their heads in bewilderment and confusion as they try to figure out what is really going on, and where Maria is supposed to be working. This is a future world where globalization has been taken to an extreme, and where trans-national workers speak a strange hybrid of French, Spanish, Arabic and English. This is a good idea but the result is a constant sense of mystification and stupefaction that permeates and envelops the story.

    However, Code 46 looks great and the decision by maverick British director, Michael Winterbottom to film on location in places like Shanghai and Dubai was a good idea, because he imbues his film with a sterile, ghostly, and often lonely ambience. The stark fluorescent affluence of ultramodern airports, subway concourses, smog-soaked skylines, and steel and chromed hotels are contrasted with impoverished outlying regions, where the poor live in shacks by vast freeways and barter their wares with wealthy tourists. Winterbottom shows us a world of great global mobility juxtaposed with extreme and acute inequality.

    Morton and Robbins are an unlikely match, but they're both very good. Their steely, often reserved acting styles suitably match the sense of disparateness, isolation, and loneliness that saturates the movie. There's a sense of metallic gloom in Code 46 as both William and Maria are forced to navigate their way through a world that is probably closer and more realistic than one might think. Mike Leonard February 05.
    ...more info