Johnny Mnemonic Movie Review

In 2021, when the world is basically ruled by corporate Japan, humans with microchip brain implants are used to transport the most important of data files. Computer networks are unsafe, because people can "jack in" and neo-physically enter the complex world of cyberspace, where a computer virus won't just knock out your computer, it'll kill you outright.

This is the world of writer William Gibson, and it seems like a pretty interesting place to visit. It's unfortunate that Johnny Mnemonic does very little in this setting and comes off as little more than a remake of Tron, without the lightcycle sequence.

The plot (if you can't guess) is like this: Keanu Reeves is one of these cyber-couriers, his brain so packed with information he doesn't even know his last name. The information? The cure for "NAS," the plague of the next century. Out to get him? Both the corporation he's working for and their rivals, preacher/mercenary Dolph Lundgren (yes, it's true), plus the LoTeks, a gang of antiestablishment types led by Ice-T. On his side is a doctor (Henry Rollins, rounding out the pop culture cast) and newcomer Dina Meyer, as his bodyguard.

Lots of characters here--almost all of them plastic and lifeless, especially Reeves in what could have been a great role. In fact, the whole movie is a "could have been," but it mostly sells out to the young video game crowd the film is destined to attract and never makes a point except for one brief scene with Rollins jumping around and howling about how technology is bad. Whatever.

On the redeeming side are the ultra-cool cyberspace sequences, which are required viewing on the big screen. Also good, but overpowered by the animation, is Meyer as Johnny's bodyguard and eventual love interest. Together, these two aspects of the movie make it largely watchable.

The main problem with Johnny Mnemonic (as if I hadn't listed enough already) is the plot: the bad guys are trying to get Johnny's head in order to extract the information. What's the point of a human courier if you can get the info out just by chopping his head off? Maybe a portable hard drive would be cheaper next time.


Johnny Mnemonic Rating

" Weak "

Rating: R, 1995


More Keanu Reeves

Is Brad Pitt's 'Fury' Too Violent?

It was undoubtedly the star pulling power of Brad Pitt that helped David Ayer's World War II drama Fury accelerate past Gone Girl to the...

Keanu Reeves And Stars Of 'John Wick' Pose At The Arrivals For The Film Screening

During the arrivals for the New York special screening of 'John Wick' at Regal Union Square Stadium the cast and directors was photographed. Among these,...

John Wick Trailer

John Wick was one of the criminal underground's finest hitmen until the untimely death of his beloved wife. Now he's living a relatively solitary life...

21 Years: Richard Linklater Trailer

Richard Linklater is well known in the film industry as one of the stand out names in indie movie making. Responsible for a wide variety...


Second Intruder Breaks into Keanu Reeves House, Takes a Shower

Things we learnt today: Keanu Reeves has the worst home security system in Hollywood. You may remember we reported last week that a woman had...

Keanu Reeves, After Discovering Stranger In His Library, Remains Almost Superhumanly Calm

We've seen Keanu Reeves defy gravity and jump between realities as Neo in The Matrix, but we weren't prepared for how incredibly calm he reportedly...

Keanu Reeves Faces Home Intruder, Remains Awesome Whilst Doing So

It's not often that Keanu Reeves makes the headlines; he's a private man, and with his box office appearences fairly hit and miss since the...

Will Keanu Reeves Ever Be A Big Box Office Star Again?

Back in the 90s Keanu Reeves was one of Hollywood’s top heartthrobs. Along with Brad Pitt, Tom Cruise and Johnny Depp, Reeves could pull in...