Directed by Doug Liman

Written by David S. Goyer, Jim Uhls, Simon Kinberg

Starring Hayden Christensen



Let me be clear about this: "Jumper" is a dreadful film. It wants to be a kind of "Matrix," only with "Jumpers," that is, genetically aberrant people who can jump from, say, the head of the Sphinx to a surfing beach in the Pacific to the inside of a bank vault to the Colosseum in Rome - all they need to do is visualize it and they're there; and the Jumpers' mortal enemies, the Paladins, who seem to have no other life's work but to hunt out and kill the Jumpers. Unfortunately it has two insurmountable obstacles. One, the script is so flat, as compared with the gyrations on screen, that we're likely to nod off as though it were a boring powerpoint presentation. And two, if you're still with me, it has the remarkably untalented Hayden Christensen - he of the inert "Star Wars Episodes II and III - as the lead. He must have a hell of an agent.

The film starts in high school, as these things are likely to do, when the young David Rice (played here by Max Theriot, who actually is quite believable) has a crush on a girl, Millie, but is bullied by another boy and ends up drowning in the icy river, which is where he discovers that he can levitate himself anyplace and ends up on the Ann Arbor library. Okay so far, but then we cut to the adult David, now played, if that's the word for it, by monosyllabic Hayden Christensen, who has broken into a bank vault and has enough cash to live well for a lifetime. He leaves a note saying he'll pay it back. Right.

He fnds Millie again (now played by Rachel Bilson) and takes her to her dream spot: Rome, where, uh-oh, he finds that he isn't the only Jumper around; there's another one there, Griffin (played with great pizazz by Jamie Bell, whom you'll remember as the boy from "Billy Elliott.") And he also meets a Paladin in the form of Samuel L. Jackson, wearing some kind of schmatte on his head that's all white; I hope it's not his own hair.

The rest of the film is taken up with David trying to stay alive by staying away from Jackson. Oh, and one sad thing: Poor Diane Lane is somehow roped into this as David's mother, who left him at age five because - well, I won't give it away. Yes, I will; the film is just too stupid to take seriously. It turns out that she is, tah-dah, a Paladin herself. Her last words are, "I'll give you a head start." The end.