Friday evening, Neill Blomkamp blessed Comic-Con with a world exclusive. The director debuted the first footage from his new sci-fi flick Elysium to the Hall H audience. The film stars Matt Damon and Jodie Foster like we’ve never seen them before. Prior to showing the clip, Blomkamp hit the crowd with a disclaimer. The movie isn’t finished therefore, the reel is littered with early stage visual effects. He didn’t want them to distract us from what Elysium has to offer. And they didn’t!
It started off with several title cards describing the film’s setting. The year is 2159 and Earth is dying. But there is one place that can offer salvation, it’s called Elysium. It looks like a planet covered in paradise. Terminal illnesses can be cured in minutes, everyone’s happy and there’s no poverty.
Unfortunately, Elysium isn’t for the Average Joe. There’s a shot of a man on a ship traveling to the planet only to be shot down by missiles. Whoever runs this place, doesn’t want us there. Cut to Max (Damon), who’s buff and full off sass. He’s a convict that works in some type of plant or chemical facility.
We see Max at work, operating the door of a containment cell. He accidentally gets locked inside and is exposed to something that makes him deathly ill. He’s told that he’ll die in five days. Max’s only hope to survive is Elysium and its tricked out medical advancements.
There are several flashes of Foster sporting a short blonde hair cut, and a European accent. William Fichnter, who plays John Carlyle, is also shown in a sharp suit channeling his character from Drive Angry 3D. He’s very cold, mechanical almost. He has information that Max needs, and Max wants to pick his brain to get it — literally.
Max and a group of friends, including Diego Luna attempt to “steal” what’s in Carlyle’s head. But be careful what you wish for. After a grizzly surgery scene, Max wakes up with extra body parts. He’s a Universal Solider-type complete with tubes and metal body attachments (hence the photo above).
Oh, and don’t let that image fool you, Max isn’t the bad ass of this movie. That title goes to Sharlto Copley. Yes! Mr. Copley is an assassin going after Damon. He looks like a hobo but walks with a pimp strut. Him and Damon really go at it, engaging in some serious hand to hand combat.
Overall, there’s a lot of suspense and plenty of action. Damon was visibly buff and could shoot to kill. Max is like a raw, unrefined yet less calculated version of Jason Bourne.
Elysium opens in theaters everywhere March 1.