"It’s a popcorn flick by nature: lots of action"

Ryan (Noel Clarke) has been hijacked, body and soul, by a crazy scientist. He doesn’t know what is going on except for these less than 10 minute short intervals when he is controlling himself.

Coming to consciousness in random yet often tense situations; at a brothel, in a CIA interrogation room, in a laboratory etc. he tries to violently and fairly cunningly break free from his puppet master and his son, played by Ian Somerhalder (The Vampire Diaries).

It’s a popcorn flick by nature: lots of action, a short attention span plot, laser guns and Alexis Knapp and Ian Somerhalder as attractive bait.

Yet there is something distinctly un-Hollywood about the film. For one, it doesn’t have the budget. There is as much science fiction and special effects going on as you might expect from a high school chemistry teacher trying to impress a classroom of uninspired teenagers. The fighting scenes look like brawls, unintelligent fists thrown around. The slow motion effect so strongly associated with The Matrix only reminds the audience what this film doesn’t reach up to.

Noel Clarke as an actor and director is also a bit vague in this film. Although we see him on screen in every scene, it’s hard to get a feeling for who this character is and why we should care for him. Hopefully his macho vibe and the generosity of scenes displaying his behind finds some grateful viewers. The character doesn’t have much personality and the interactions between him and Dana (Alexis Knapp) seem incredible. At least he didn’t blow his own trumpet like in a previous film where one character in “4-3-2-1” describes him as: “Kind of sexy and probably very well endowed.

After both a BAFTA and an Olivier Award and praise for his films about underprivileged teenagers in London (Kidulthood, Adulthood) it seems The Anomaly, just like “4-3-2-1” is yet another step away from what impressed people about his vision in the first place.