The Adjustment Bureau – review | Film | The Guardian
If one were to depict the new film The Adjustment Bureau as an arithmetic And so it goes from there: David and Elise get together; Fate's. David races across town, fighting the Bureau's abilities to "control his choices" to ensure he will meet Elise again. During the chase, The Bureau uses doors to. Adjust Expectations for The Adjustment Bureau Before Elise dashes away from hotel security, David is able to get her name, but not her number. . The problem is that David wasn't supposed to meet Elise on the bus earlier that day.
Harry, who is guilt ridden, comes to David and tells him that Thompson was lying when he said David and Elise's lives would've been ruined - they would have just been content with each other. David gets Harry to help him reunite with Elise using The Adjustment Bureau's method of travelling using portals hidden in doors.
David successfully finds Elise in the washroom of the courthouse she is getting married in and in the process of apologizing to her, he reveals the existence of the Bureau.
In danger of getting his mind erased, David gets Elise to follow him through the different portals until they end up at the Statue of Liberty, where they are trapped. David decides to try and confront "the chairman" of The Adjustment Bureau and he and Elise re-enter the door by turning the knob in the opposite direction, which leads them to the Bureau's headquarters.
David and Elise try to race the chairman's office, but they are eventually trapped by Thompson on the roof of a building. However, Harry then comes to Thompson with new instructions from the chairman. Thompson reads the new instructions and then excuses itself. It turns out that the chairman was so impressed with David's determination to be with Elise that he rewrote their life plan so they can be together.
David and Elise end up happily together and Harry narrates that perhaps one day humanity as a whole will be allowed to write their own destinies.
Richardson says that if Norris ever talks about TAB, they'll reset his brain, erasing his personality and making him appear to the rest of the world, to be catatonic and insane for the rest of his life. But then, to Norris's horror, Richardson also tells Norris that his meeting with Sellas on the bus was not supposed to happen and he's never supposed to see her again. His men forcibly search Norris to find the card on which Sellas had written her name and number, and they burn it.
Before he can even get back up, Traynor comes in through the other door, upset because he'd called Norris 'ten times' without an answer. Traynor brings Charlie to the meeting and endorses the solar panel proposal. But after the meeting, Traynor is puzzled. Before the whole fiasco with TAB, Norris had told Traynor how he'd run into Elise again, and instead of being giddy with happiness, he's acting like he's in a big fog of confusion about everything. In truth, Norris is; hardly able to believe what he'd gone through and yet not daring to speak a word of it, in case the threat given by Richardson was true.
Mitchell arrives, wondering why Norris is fixated on one woman when his whole world has been turned upside down. He tells Norris that even if he remembered the number, TAB had many ways to make sure the call never went through. He insists that TAB 'adjustments' only make small changes in the way people reason; tweaking emotions was too intrusive and could end up with many unforeseen and unintended 'side adjustments' called 'ripples'.
He offers to meet Norris on the 4 pm Staten Island Ferry and he'll answer whatever he's allowed to answer there. Before he leaves, however, Mitchell repeats Richardson's warning about resetting Norris if he reveals the existence of TAB. On the boat, Mitchell tells Norris that when he arrived at RSR and walked in on TAB 'adjusting' Traynor, they were simply making subtle shifts in the way he weighs investments, which would shift the direction of the company according to 'plan.
Although TAB must monitor the whole world, there aren't enough of them to keep watch on every individual. And, as Mitchell points out, water blocks TAB's power to read people's decision-making processes. Mitchell doesn't know why TAB is preventing Norris from finding Sellas, but he knows that TAB has expended enough resources already to make the need to keep them apart very important.
Mitchell urges Norris to move on with his life. Even if TAB wasn't actively working to keep him from Sellas which they areNew York City has so many people that the odds of running into her again are near nil.
Three years pass, and Norris has tried to do as Mitchell recommended. But he continues to ride the same bus he met Sellas on, at the same time as the last time he ran into her there, even sitting in the same double seat the two of them shared. And one day, it happens: Getting off the bus, he hurries after her, to find her reception of him a little cooler than before.
But he wins her back over by promising on the graves of his parents 'too heavy, but it's true,' he says that his wallet, which contained her number, was taken from him in a mugging, and that he googled her first name only to getlinks, none of which led to her because he didn't know her last name.
Movie Pooper for the film - The Adjustment Bureau
Richardson is in shock; he knows Norris has ridden the same bus every day for three years hoping to find Sellas again, and can hardly believe how he just bumped into her again by chance. Richardson hurries into action, making small 'adjustments,' including cutting power to a studio where Sellas performs; the camera switches to Sellas and Norris talking, and she's telling him that she's a professional ballet dancer at a company called Cedar Lake, and she'll be giving a show at the studio tomorrow.
As Norris and Sellas sit at a nice cafe for drinks, Richardson and his cohort, McCrady Anthony Ruivivarfind that Sellas's decision-making tree is starting to veer toward a large number of unforeseen inflection points. Richardson prepares adjustments that will change the location of the Cedar Lake rehearsal at the last minute.
But the plan book shows another major inflection point: If they bond close enough to share a 'real' kiss, any and all attempts by TAB to separate Norris and Sellas again, will produce ripple effects far in excess of their allotted limit. When Traynor tells Norris that a large crowd is gathered at the Brooklyn Bridge to hear David make another public appearance speech in preparation for a Senate run, Sellas begs Norris not to put the speech off just for her sake.
She tells him she's just heard her rehearsal will be at Pier 17, very close to the bridge. Richardson is relieved as he sees Traynor and Sellas push for Norris to do as he had originally planned.
As Norris arrives at the bridge to make his announcement speech for Senate candidacy inRichardson and his colleague are viewing a text message sent to Sellas announcing the rehearsal had just been moved back to Cedar Lake. But as the speech ends, and Norris and Traynor are are heading away, Norris happens to spot Richardson observing him from a window.
Glancing back and forth between the window and Pier 17, Norris figures out what Richardson has done. Refusing to back down from Traynor about the need for a follow-up interview, Norris hurries to Pier 17 and sure enough, finds it closed. But this time Norris has a definite name he can pinpoint: He calls to get the address, but Richardson kills his signal.
When Richardson sees Norris running to the parking attendant to use the hard line, Richardson cuts that signal as well.
Norris sees a restaurant across the street, and Richardson, exasperated, cuts all phone signals in a three-block radius. He personally begins to follow Norris to try and talk some sense into him.
But Norris refuses to back down even when Richardson confronts him face to face. He doesn't care if 'The Chairman' personally wrote the 'plan,' he doesn't accept it as right if it's so completely set on keeping him and Sellas apart. Looking intently at Richardson, Norris finally figures out that Richardson himself doesn't know why it's so earth-shakingly important that Norris and Sellas be kept apart. When Richardson cannot answer, Norris is filled with even more resolve.
Finally outsmarting Richardson once and for all, Norris walks into the restaurant and politely asks for the attention of all the staff and patrons, asking if any of them have heard of Cedar Lake dance studio, and where he can find it. One of the restaurant guests does know the location. Richardson and his colleague check their plan book, now both desperate. They keep all taxicabs passing through from picking up Norris to give him a ride, but undaunted, Norris decides to run if he has to; taunting Richardson about how many tiny adjustments he's making in how many people's plans, causing more and more ripple effects.
Norris finally gets a taxicab to stop for him, but the cab is immediately hit hard by a car. Norris hails an ambulance and police. But when one officer tries too hard to continue asking him questions, Norris figures out he's actually a TAB member and goes to consult with the sergeant, who assures him the police can call him if need be.
Adjust Expectations for The Adjustment Bureau
Richardson and McCrady race desperately after Norris, and we see they can go through ordinary doors to use them as teleportation gates. Inflection points appear in the plan book and they see that once Norris sees Sellas dance, Richardson will have reached his ripple limit. Richardson tries blocking the studio's doors, but it's too late; Norris looks into the studio and begins to watch Sellas rehearsing. Richardson's reached his ripple limit and Norris knows it. But as Richardson's mobile phone rings, he warns Norris that the overseeing of his plan will only be 'kicked upstairs.The Adjustment Bureau (2011) - Elise on the Bus Scene (2/10) - Movieclips
In the TAB headquarters, Richardson is met by his immediate superior, Donaldson Donnie Keshawarzwho has done some research on all that's been happening with Norris and Sellas.
He's found that the reason they met up by chance two times despite all the work that's been done to keep them apart, is because their plans were re-written some time ago. Norris and Sellas WERE originally meant to be together and to fall in love, and it wasn't until that Sellas's plan was re-written so she would stay with Adrian, the lead choreographer for Cedar Lake. Remnants of the original plan is what keeps pushing Norris and Sellas back together and why they feel so strongly about each other, connecting so easily and deeply.
Talking with one of his subordinates, Donaldson says that cleaning up the mess is going to mean bringing in one of TAB's heaviest hitters, an adjustment overseer named Thompson Terence Stampwho is nicknamed The Hammer in TAB for his methods. Norris and Sellas have been walking through the streets of Manhattan, talking and connecting, during the whole scene. It's evening, and Sellas wants to bring Norris to a dance club. Norris feels he is a horrible dancer, so Sellas offers him a dare: If she wins, he has to come to the club with her.
To sweeten the pot, she agrees that if Norris wins, she'll dance for him back at one of their apartments. Sellas playfully says there are no rules, whereupon Norris instantly takes off and builds an insurmountable lead, as sellas can't run fast in the shoes she's wearing.
But in an amusing tortoise-and-hare twist, he stops just shy of the lamppost as Sellas pretends to concede to him, only for her to slug him in the stomach and take off running, reaching the lamppost. Sellas brings Norris to a dance club, which makes a huge favorable impression with the club's patrons. As they're leaving the club, Norris tells Sellas more about how he got into politics: The camera pans in on Sellas as Norris talks, and it's shown how the story touches her heart.
She starts to kiss Norris; the 'true kiss' Richardson had fretted about earlier As they are sleeping, the camera pans out from the bed to show Thompson gravely watching them slumber. Sellas wakes up the next morning, finding Norris gone. Her cell phone rings; Adrian is calling. As she talks to him, Norris returns with coffee for her. She tells Adrian she has to go, and as she ends the call, she finds that he called three times while she was still asleep. Sellas explains to Norris that Adrian is her ex-fiance, as well as an extremely skilled dancer and choreographer, and she's surprised that he suddenly called her four times that morning three months after their breakup, almost as if he knew she was with someone Norris's face changes; he looks very concerned that TAB had a hand in that.
But Sellas's explanation why she didn't marry Adrian is touching: Norris promises never to hurt her, because it's the first time in 25 years that he doesn't feel alone. Norris brings Sellas with him as he leaves to be interviewed on the Jon Stewart show, and she sits in his backstage dressing room, amusedly watching the interview on a monitor.
Just as the interview wraps, a crew member for the show tells Sellas that Norris asked him to tell her that he was just called into an urgent meeting, but he'll call her when he's done, and that he'll see her tonight at Cedar Lake when she and her troupe give a live performance. But the crew member is actually a TAB member, and as he opens a door for Norris, he passes through to find himself in the warehouse where he'd been taken by Richardson before.
The door he'd just gone though is now locked and he's trapped there, and he knows why. Thompson arrives in the warehouse and introduces himself. After a brief exchange about the nature of free will Thompson claims that people only have free will on small every-day decisions, not large ones with impact on many other peopleThompson finally reveals why TAB is so set on keeping Norris separated from Sellas.
He was supposed to meet her once, and only once; the meeting in the men's room of the hotel was intentional, because talking to her there inspired him to give the concession speech that pulled him out of the brink of political ruin to become the front-runner he is today for US Senate, and that he's destined not only to be a great senator, but a great US President.
However, if he and Sellas remain together, her playful, bold nature would rub off on the impulsive Norris, which would severely impede his ability to lead the country as president. When Norris insists that the core of his being is made of the choices he makes, and that he chooses Sellas, come what may, Thompson lets him leave the garage and says he can still catch Sellas's dance recital if he hurries. Norris hurries to the Cedar Lake studio for the performance, watching Sellas dance with her troupe mates.
Thompson arrives there a minute later, and finally drops "The Hammer: But if she stays with Norris, her future will likely be teaching dance to young children, running a small dance school, unknown outside of her local community. Finally, before Thompson leaves, he causes Sellas to mistime a jump and hurt her ankle badly in the landing. Distraught, Norris carries her to the nearest hospital.
He sits in the waiting room, brooding, while Sellas's feet and lower legs are X-rayed. As Norris waits, Thompson arrives and tells him that what's happened is his fault. Norris furiously belts Thompson with a left hook, but Thompson coolly says that this is what Norris does; what he did to get into a bar fight on his election to congress, what he did to be photographed in the embarrassing article in the Post that cost him the previous election.
He's been given fantastic opportunities the average person can only dream of, and he's squandered them on impulsive actions Thompson finishes by saying her ankle is only sprained, but Norris could end up taking away all she's cared about most.
Norris goes to see Sellas in the recovery room. Her ankle is bandaged and will recover within a month, much to her relief. Norris gives her an emotional hug and excuses himself to make a couple of phone calls before bringing Sellas home.
But as he walks through the halls of the hospital, it's clear he isn't going to return; he's crumpled under 'the hammer' and walked out of Sellas's life.
Richardson approaches Mitchell at TAB headquarters to report Thompson's success the camera switches to see a despondent Sellas being wheeled out of the hospital by one of her girl friends. He's begun to question if they're doing what's truly right. Richardson admits he used to feel that way, but TAB members like himself and Mitchell only see part of 'the Plan' as written by the Chairman.
It's eleven months later, and Norris is making a public appearance at a small local farming community.
A news report gives him a staggering point lead over his opponent less than a month before Election Day. As Norris wraps up the appearance, Traynor hands Norris a newspaper. He knows Norris would find out about the article eventually, and he wanted to be there when Norris did. The front page article for the newspaper gives a glowing review for Sellas; her dance career is starting to shine brightly; the latest Cedar Lake show routine winning national acclaim.
But Traynor is pointing to one of the inset photos in the article. It shows that Sellas has gotten back together with Adrian Shane McRae and they're getting married in a small civil ceremony next week. Mitchell is seen standing in front of the warehouse, reading the same article. Norris goes to a pier, looking out over the water.
Sellas looks over her application form for a marriage license, looking troubled. She hands him a folded piece of paper. In the evening, Norris goes to the warehouse and is met there by Mitchell. Mitchell tells Norris that Thompson's claim that Sellas brings out a reckless, impulsive side to Norris, was a lie.
However, Mitchell says that Sellas would nonetheless impede Norris's ability to become an excellent political leader: Sellas would fill that hole in his heart so completely that he'd lose that driving need to be with other people and fall out of touch with them; even any personal dreams of making it to the White House would fade.
Why Mitchell is agreeing to help Norris is that he understands that Norris's personal ambitions are important, but not the only thing that matters. Mitchell knows that Norris's father and brother were both very intelligent people, and both of them could have, and wanted to, become much greater and bigger people than they turned out; 'The Plan' didn't 'call for it.
Mitchell, smiling wistfully, acknowledges that the public loves Norris. But, as Norris is beginning to realize is true, this public attention was all he ever cared about, and he's noticing it less and less since he became involved with Sellas. Still, he can't stop thinking about her. He asks Mitchell if he knows where Sellas's marriage will be taking place. Mitchell only says it will be in front of a civil judge, but warns Norris that Thompson will be on the scene in a heartbeat if Norris tries to go to her.
Norris realizes that Mitchell is afraid to admit that sellas isn't happy; she's 'settling for second-best' after Norris left her. Knowing that Mitchell does want to help him, Norris asks if Mitchell can help him move the way a TAB person does; to teach him about the doors. Mitchell says the heavy rains outside will stop in one hour, and the rain is the only reason TAB doesn't know about Norris and Mitchell talking.
To make all the plans and preparations, therefore, they need a place completely surrounded by water, because they'll need all night to work. The first and foremost thing Mitchell warns Norris is to only turn doorknobs clockwise; to turn them counterclockwise is only for TAB members.