Cyberpunk Review » Freejack

January 31, 2006


Year: 1992

Directed by: Geoff Murphy

Written by: Robert Sheckley (Novel), Steven Pressfield et al. (Screenplay)

IMDB Reference

Degree of Cyberpunk Visuals: Medium

Correlation to Cyberpunk Themes: Medium

Key Cast Members:

  • Alex Furlong: Emilio Estevez
  • Victor Vacendak: Mick Jagger
  • Julie Redlund: Rene Russo
  • Ian McCandless: Anthony Hopkins
  • Rating: 5 out of 10

    DVD Cover


    Overview: No, this is NOT a great movie, but I love the Rolling Stones, so sue me!

    In Freejack, the earth’s environment has become severely damaged, to the point that most people suffer some form of illness. But technology has advanced to the point that someone’s consciousness can be transferred from one person to another. Also, a version of time travel, where a body can be taken forward to the “present” (2009), while risky, has become possible. Now, bounty hunters from the near future raid the past for perfect bodies with flatlined brains to bring forward in time to sell to the highest bidder. Emilio Estevez plays a race car driver who crashes and dies in a spectacular way on live TV back in 1992, but just before he dies, is taken to the future by a shady character played by Mick Jagger.

    The Bottom Line: Freejack loses out incredibly on believability, as does it for its insanely fast prediction for both the destruction of the earth and the relatively rapid speed of technology progression. In retrospect, maybe this movie should have taken place in 2049 instead. One wonders Murphy took a cast with Emilio Estivez, Rene Russo and Anthony Hopkins and then churned out something so cheesy. It’s movies such as Freejack that gave cyberpunk films a poor quality image by the early 90s. Still, Jagger is pretty fun in this, as is the rest of the cast. As long as you turn off your brain, you should enjoy some decent cyberpunk visuals here.

    EDIT: ETM reminds me in the comments below that Freejack also does bring up an interesting question that needs consideration: if technology gives life to a person, does the one who owns the technology own that life? This alone bumps it up to the “medium” catagory in the cyberpunk themes.


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    Tags: cyberpunk movie review Freejack

    This post has been filed under Time Travel, Dystopic Future Movies, 5 Star Rated Movies, Cyberpunk movies from 1990 - 1999 by SFAM.


    January 31, 2006

    ETM said:

    While I enjoy Freejack on a purely cheese-factor induced basis, I would argue that it is a bit harsh saying that it is low in correlation to CP themes… Except for the mind-transfer, which is an obvious manifestation of the man-machine interface concept, there are no primary CP concepts in the movie. However, I think you should take into consideration a rather interesting question brought up by the film - if technology gives life to a person, does the one who owns the technology own that life?
    I think it has been explored to an extent in the movie, although only superficialy, but deserves a mention at least. :)

    SFAM said:

    Well said ETM, you sold me. That does merit mention and probably merits bringing it up to at least a medium on that scale. You’re right - technology “creating” a person and thus owning them is certainly a cyberpunk theme - Bladerunner covers much of the same territory.

    March 17, 2006

    Nytflyr said:

    Johnny 2.0 does a much better and more believeable take on the same type of story, even though it was definitally a low buget endevor

    March 18, 2006

    SFAM said:

    Hi Nytflyr, welcome to cyberpunkreview :)

    I must confess, I hadn’t heard of Johnny 2.0 - thanks so much for the reference! It definitely looks cyberpunk :)

    November 14, 2009

    Hoopla said:

    I’d add to ETM’s comments that there are two more themes that make this a definite CP movie:
    1. The dystopian near future with companies more important than governments or the rule of law
    2. The mix of old (current) and new technology rather than a pure future.

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