Person Of Interest is now three episodes into its first season, and looking pretty good. The show is the brain child of Jonathan Nolan (Dark Knight, Memento, Inception), and it also has J.J. Abrams producing. Not only does the show feel like it was written by a Nolan, but it look’s like a Nolan film through and through. Interestingly enough it’s based on a screenplay written by Abrams and Nolan, which Nolan adapted for television later on. Here’s the wiki synopsis –
“Mr. Finch (Michael Emerson), a mysterious billionaire, has developed a computer program that predicts the identity of people connected to violent crimes that will take place in the future. However, the program has its limitations; for example, it cannot predict whether the person will be a victim, perpetrator, or witness, nor can it predict when or where the crime will take place. Unable to stop the crimes on his own, Finch hires John Reese (Jim Caviezel), a former CIA field officer who is presumed dead, to help stop the crimes from taking place.”
The plot really isn’t that innovative, and in fact it feels like a mishmash of other notable science fiction and revenge-hit man story lines. You’ll probably instantly catch the whole Minority Report vibe, though unlike Minority Report the pre-crime aspect of the show is not driven by psychics, but instead a super computer and all the recording devices it can connect it’s self to. In the show it is referred to simply as “The machine” and little has been explained about how it actually works up to this point. That’s where Abrams stuff show’s through. Especially when Finch is on screen you get the feeling a great deal more is going on, and more than likely the mystery in the show is going to be treated like lost(they even use flash backs in the same manner).
Person Of Interest is at its best when John Reese is kicking ass, imagine Batman with a gun and the willingness to kill. Though it should be pointed out Reese seems to only kill those who he has to, this is something better explained by watching the show, but the way he handles shootouts without killing anyone is actually rather cool. Some of the action sequences are so well done that it could easily be mistaken for cinema, I frankly don’t recall ever seeing shootouts, or hand to hand fight scenes of this caliber on television. It’s especially surprising when you consider its on CBS, but leave it to a Nolan and Abrams to excel where others generally fail miserably. I haven’t sat down weekly for a television show since Battlestar Galactica was on, this has brought me back to the couch, and the only way I see this show being derailed, is if they drop the ball on the mystery portion of the show. I mean I enjoyed Lost, and even Fringe for a while, but in the case of Lost things really dragged and faltered mid-way into that series. I realize Abrams had little to do with it at that point, so I don’t hold it against him, I just thinks it’s a concern with this type of story-telling. Yet, still the balance of visceral action, and sci-fi/mystery is phenomenal at this point. It’s even got a tragic love story as a sub plot, which if I’m right will later play into the over all plot.
All and all Person Of Interest is fantastic, from its realistic approach to the unrealistic, the killer over-all production value of the show, excellent acting, and the mere fact a Nolan is involved are all reasons to give this show a watch. To generalize a bit and put it another way If you enjoy shows like Lost, Fringe, or movies like Taken, Man On Fire, The Bourne Identity, then this show is perfect for you. I’ve tried not to give too much away here as that’s part of what makes the show great, is going along for the ride (blind), but if your still not interested in “Person of Interest” Check out the promo below, find a way to catch up if you’re not already watching, and catch it on CBS Thursday nights.