It’s based on a Philip K. Dick story. And there’s a sci-fi element to it. But The Adjustment Bureau is no Blade Runner. But, thankfully, it’s no A Scanner Darkly either.
This muddled story about a popular politician (played by a coasting Matt Damon) whose fate is in the hands of a mysterious agency loses itself between worlds. There’s a love story, with Emily Blunt as a dancer who stumbles into his life the night he loses a big election. Then there’s the story of the shady committee of hat-wearing men who monitor all aspects of Damon’s life.
And they don’t like it one bit when it steers off course, thanks to the impulsive Blunt. So they spend the entire movie trying to keep them apart. The “people who make sure things go as planned” can read Damon’s mind, stop time, and wipe out memories. But The Adjustment Bureau isn’t a mind-fuck like Inception. And it certainly isn’t as thrilling (characters go through lots and lots of doors). But the love story is better, even if you have to sit through the muddy sci-fi to get to it. --Michael Gallucci