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Tom Cruise’s summer sci-fi feature Edge of Tomorrow was probably the best film most of you didn’t see in this odd blockbuster box office season. A sort of action-oriented take on Groundhog Day, the film struggled to break the $100 million mark in domestic ticket sales – which is a shame, because it’s actually a really good movie, filled with action, explosions, gigantic set-pieces, and guys running around in mech-like exoskeletons. Most films today would use CGI almost exclusively to create the images and explosions of Edge of Tomorrow, but director Doug Liman went for a mixture of computer generated imagery and old-fashioned practical effects. The results are amazing, as you can see in this B-roll footage. We’re astonished Cruise (who loves to do his own stunts) or some of the other cast members weren’t killed making this movie…
The clip, which is posted over at Giant Freakin’ Robot, is five minutes worth of random footage culled from the shooting of the movie. We can see Doug Liman giving Tom Cruise and co-star Emily Blunt direction between takes, actors running about attached to wires to help make them move more effectively in the bulky metal suits of armor, and a whole lot of very real (and very dangerous looking) explosions. Watching it, it’s easy to see how Edge of Tomorrow (now being referred to as Live, Die, Repeat for its home video release next month) wound up costing Warner Bros. $178 million to make.
In the film, aliens called Mimics have invaded Earth and vanquished most of humanity’s military forces. Major William Cage (Tom Cruise) is a PR officer with no battle experience – but he’s sent into combat anyway, where he’s almost instantly killed. Somehow, Cage winds up in a time loop, where he repeats the mission again, like it’s a videogame reloading his last save point. Each time he dies, it’s back to square one – but through repetition, Cage learns not only how to be a good combat soldier, but how to best take on the alien enemies. The whole thing is based on a Japanese young adult novel called All You Need is Kill.
Edge of Tomorrow may have underperformed at the box office, but there’s still hope that the title will find an appreciative audience on home video when it releases on DVD and Blu-ray on October 7th. Dredd, the reboot of the cult comic franchise with Karl Urban playing a judge who’s also jury and executioner is a similar style film that struggled theatrically, but has since gone on to find a sizable audience in the home video market. Hopefully the same thing happens for Tom Cruise’s latest. It’s too good for more people not to see it, and as you can see from this B-roll video, he clearly put his life and body on the line to make it.