(Paul McGuigan, 2009)
Notable elements of Push:
- A likeable performance from Chris Evans as telekinetic Nick Gant, wasting his powers as a hustler in Hong Kong after the opening flashback reveals his tragic back-story (similarly telekinetic father killed by Government goons the Division). Evans is effortlessly sympathetic and amusing when he needs to be, and he makes a frustrating character that much more tolerable.
- Hong Kong itself, all buzzing energy in the streets and markets, nimbly captured by McGuigan's camera.
- The world of this film is like a mini Marvel or DC universe, but here it tries to establish that universe and its rules within the boundaries of a single two hour film, making it overstuffed and hard to follow.
- There are some imaginative treatments of super-powers and their potential uses; Cliff Curtis uses his power of suggestion to live a continual party lifestyle, for instance, rather than trying to save or conquer the world.
- The final set-piece is set in the skeleton of a half-completed skyscraper (cliche), involves two telekinetics throwing power-assisted punches at one another while Chinese gangsters die in their dozens around them, and still manages to be tremendously dull.
- An under-developed, unconvincing, half-arsed romance between Evans and Belle, which takes attention away from the far more interesting friendship between Evans and Dakota Fanning's clairvoyant.
- McGuigan directs with a good feel for place and tone and an efficient handle on action scenes.
-Djimon Hounsou has entirely the wrong sort of presence for the role of Big Bad in a film like this, and that severely weakens the balance here.