“Push” is a sci-fi thriller with a lot of science fiction and zero thrills. The film stars the normally likeable Chris Evans as Nick Gant, a telekinetic with the ability to ‘push’ or move things. His character is on the run with a teenage girl, Cassie Holmes (Dakota Fanning). They are searching for her mother, who has been imprisoned by a secret government agency called the ‘Division’. This agency, since World War II, has been kidnapping people with special talents and forcing them to do the Division’s will. The Division baddie, played by Djimon Hounsou, has no powers whatsoever but is apparently dangerous so everyone must run from him. Insert another Asian group of super humans into the fray and the story gets more ridiculous than it already is.
The plot involves a lot of double crossing and has a hitch that is meant to surprise at the climax. I was barely awake so the excitement of this revelation barely registered. Push has too much going on to make any sense at all. It’s a bunch of characters running around and using superpowers. I did find the ‘Bleeders’, people with the ability to scream until you bleed to be pretty cool. But the other host of super humans – Stitchers, Watchers, Sniffers – were altogether quite boring. It looks like the filmmakers were going for an X-men-like story, but got too involved with their convoluted script. This film would have been much more enjoyable if they toned down the intricacy.
Chris Evans is a decent actor who is trying his best to break out from the charming, pretty-boy roles. He was great in the underrated “Cellular”, but takes a step back with Push and the god awful Fantastic Four films. His personal best was as the preppy sodomizer in “Fierce Creatures”, but that movie bombed and no one saw it. His next turn is the screen adaptation of the 70’s TV show “Chips”. I can’t imagine he’ll get an Oscar nod for that, but I do hope he gets the chance for meatier roles. He’s a far better actor than a dismal action flick like Push will allow.