Jake Gyllenhaal is an Army pilot who engages in a program utilizing a deceased person’s final electrical signals registered in their brain providing a gateway into the past for exactly 8 minutes, called the source code. The objective is to stop an oncoming terror attack by examining the final moments of a recent bombing. His handler is an all business Air Force Captain played by Vera Farmiga whom is supervised by the offbeat and opportunistic genius developer of the source code science and technology, played by Jeffery Wright.
We learn at the same pace our hero does about the source code’s possibilities and limitations, at the same time playing a tight game of who-dun-it with a bomb, wooing a girl neither we, or even our hero, have ever met while dwelling in another person’s body whom that is dead, and fighting a train schedule while suffering the trauma of death and resurrection, only to face death again.
The movie is a tight and fairly original spin on a tried sci-fi trope that flows without getting weighed down by paradoxes and its plot holes that come with this type of story. Though some questions and issues arise that I can’t help but get past.
The film deals initially with a simulation of events based upon the memories of the dead avatar’s final eight minutes, however it is revealed that the source code is true time travel. In 93 minutes, there wasn’t enough time to really dig into how they are able to change time via what was theorized as just mental projections and how in a new timeline they resolve the ending fate of our hero considering he is on life support and near-braindead, as it relates to the survivors (or are they) of the train. Time travel stories typically raise questions like this one but usually spend time to somewhat explain it. The film’s fast pace shades over these pesky pondering to deliver good entertainment effect in the end.
Do I recommend SOURCE CODE? Sure. It’s different and has a cool concept. The movie does not warrant repeat views as much as the hero repeats the source code scenario however. Still check it out if you’re not doing much else.