Vantage Point (2008)

Vantage Point Poster

The attempted assassination of the American president is told and re-told from several different perspectives.

Film Introduction
"Vantage Point" is a political thriller movie released in 2008, directed by Pete Travis, and including an ensemble cast including Dennis Quaid, Matthew Fox, Forest Whitaker, and Sigourney Weaver. The film's story unfolds in a non-linear fashion, showing the exact same event-- an assassination effort on the President of the United States-- from various viewpoints or 'vantage points.'

Setting and Event
The setting is a counter-terrorism top in Salamanca, Spain. As the United States President, Ashton (William Hurt), steps to the stage to address the audience, he is shot two times. A loud surge follows shortly after, causing turmoil and panic. The story takes us through the 23 minutes leading up to this point from 7 different point of views.

Numerous Perspectives
Each viewpoint offers a various layer of information contributing to the overarching story. Among the views consisted of are those of a secret service representative, an American tourist, a local Spanish law enforcement officer, and a manufacturer from a major news outlet. For each perspective, the clock rewinds back to the start.

Secret Characters' Analysis
Secret Service Agent, Thomas Barnes (Dennis Quaid), has just recently gone back to responsibility after an anxious breakdown. His perspective illustrates the frenzied effort to secure the President's security. Howard Lewis (Forest Whitaker) is the American traveler. His handheld camcorder captures more than he recognizes, consisting of the President's shooter and a strange drape motion from a front-facing window. The Spanish police officer, Enrique (Eduardo Noriega), finds his girlfriend, Veronica (Ayelet Zurer), is involved in the plot. Rex Brooks (Sigourney Weaver) is the news manufacturer whose live feed exposes important details.

Unraveling the Conspiracy
As the movie progresses, it ends up being clear this isn't an easy assassination attempt. An intricate conspiracy is at play to abduct the President. Each character connects the dots in their way, resulting in the discovery that Phil McCullough (Matthew Fox), another Secret Service agent, is indeed part of the strategy to kidnap the President. Each perspective moves the story forward, gradually unwinding the conspiracy behind the assassination attempt.

The climax gathers all point of views at a main scene where Barnes wards off the kidnap. Lewis records Claire Taylor's (Zoe Saldana) confession who's part of the conspiracy, shooting her before she's eliminated by Veronica who then gets away with President, just to be obstructed by Barnes. The accomplished representative saves the President, wrecks the van of the abductors and catches the terrorist leader.

"Vantage Point" uses an innovative non-linear storytelling technique to keep the audience engaged while slowly unfolding a complex political conspiracy. The movie is a thrilling expedition of viewpoints and how various people have different pieces of the same puzzle. In the end, it's about putting these pieces together to expose the bigger photo. The movie reminds viewers that things are not always as they seem, and the absolute truth typically lies beyond individual point of views, at the intersection of all viewpoint.

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