Lucy is a 2014
English-language French science fiction thriller film written and directed by
Luc Besson and produced by his wife Virginie Besson-Silla for his company
EuropaCorp. Shot in Taipei, Paris, and New York City, the movie features Scarlett
Johansson, Morgan Freeman, Choi Min-sik, and Amr Waked. Johansson, the
protagonist of the film, portrays a woman (Lucy) who gains psychokinetic
abilities when she was exposed to a nootropic drug as the drama unfolds on the
underworld drug trade.
Released on July
25, 2014, the film was a box office success, grossing over $463 million based
on a $40 million budget. Although the film was positively received for its
themes, visuals and Johansson’s performance, critical elements of the plots,
especially the scientific inaccuracies on the 10% brain utilisation myth and
resulting abilities were criticised.
excellent acting abilities shapes and effectively portrays Lucy’s drastic
character development during the course of the show, from first being a
terrified, naïve woman who witnesses the cruel and ruthless antics of Mr Jang (played
by Choi Min-sik), to a fully emotionless warrior channelling a warrior spirit, Johansson’s
intrepid characteristics are central to bringing the issue of power to the
audience when she takes on the very men who tried to kill her.
In the film,
Lucy’s knowledge of the universe and her powerful psychokinetic abilities were
enhanced after being drugged with CPH4 by Jang as a result of a botched drug
mule operation. The story line is peppered with various captivating scenes;
from the museum showcasing the first ape in the world named Lucy and the
metropolitan cities portraying the hectic lifestyle to the infinite universe.
scientific inaccuracies, the narrative of the story challenges the perception
of women being just another supportive role. Rather, the film pushes Lucy in
the spotlight, and how her actions revolved on reversing the long-rooted patriarchal
society in science-fiction films. Through the end of the film, Lucy toys with
the futile attempts of men such as Jang to control her, but failing miserably
in the end.
This begs the
question on the direction of the movie is heading towards. Lucy’s plot started
off as an accidental, typical drug mule operation to seeking revenge on her
captors. But the film never addressed Lucy’s subsequent motivation on achieving
full brain capacity, and how would that overall contribute to the story.
place importance on scientific accuracy might be disappointed with the constant
use of brain myth that is integral to the plot, but the movie offers a fresh
perception on protagonists in science-fiction films unlike Star Trek or older
Star Wars movies that are traditionally male. Lucy however shows that a female
character can lead as well as men, if not possibly better.