Science fiction films delve into similar realms of thought, one of which is the lust for immortal life. Self/less starts as an interesting narrative of one rich man’s search for more years, but it dissolves into a generic thriller as quickly as it gains momentum.
Damian is a rich man, a real estate mogul, quickly dying painfully of cancer. Reaching the final days of his life, he reflects upon his mistakes during his life and yearns for more time. Lucky, new and innovative research is available for those who can afford it, in which your consciousness can be transferred into a healthy young body.
Self/less is a movie about a desperate and sad man, a man with a vast quantity of wealth in the form of monetary gain but for which family and friends has been sacrificed. With age comes a shift in perspective, and with his imminent mortality approaching at a rapidly increasing speed, he grapples with the inevitable loss he is about to experience in dying. Unable to accept the natural order of things and right the wrongs of his life, he pays for the chance at more time, regardless of the consequences.
The concept for Self/less is intriguing enough, even if it is not completely original. Once old Damian, played by Ben Kingsley, becomes young Damian, Ryan Reynolds, there are many paths in which the story can move. Unfortunately, the film chooses the most obvious path and therefore avoiding the possibility of wowing audiences. It just does its best job at imitating the tropes common within action flicks.
Those hoping for a different version of Limitless will be mistaken, as Self/less is not that type of movie. Nor is it a deep philosophical examination of the meaning of life and death. The subject matter of the film itself may spur within your an interesting discussion, but Self/less does not take the initiative itself.