A B movie with a B-plus gimmick, Vantage Point is mostly notable as evidence for how Dennis Quaid is getting all old and kind of weird looking, yet also retains the superhuman prowess of never getting hurt ever. Quaid plays Thomas Barnes, a grumpy ol' Secret Service agent who's tasked with protecting President William Hurt (William Hurt). Except in the first five minutes of Vantage Point, KA-BANG! President Hurt gets shot! Twice! And then, just when everybody's like, "Whew! Thank Christ that's over, that was cra—" KA-BOOM! There's a huge explosion! Then, REEEEE-WIND! We see the whole catastrophe from a different point of view. And yes, literally with the rewinding—Vantage Point's footage literally plays back in reverse, like they're editing this thing on a VCR. And it happens over and over, since we end up seeing the bombastic event through seven different real-time perspectives, including those of Barnes, Hurt, and Forest Whitaker, who plays Vantage Point's very own bumbling Zapruder, capturing the assassination on his camcorder. Sigourney Weaver, Lost's Matthew Fox, and some less famous people show up, too, with their one unifying thread—other than their shared presence at the event—is that individually, all of their stories are pretty boring.
Toward the film's climax—when all seven perspectives come together, and director Pete Travis gets down to the business of making an action thriller—Vantage Point picks up, with Quaid's invincible Secret Service agent surviving crazy wounds and deadly car crashes, Whitaker doing his now-familiar everyman stuttering/panicking, and Hurt doing his best imitation of Air Force One's President Indiana Jones. As things wrap up and it drops its whole "guess whose point of view we're seeing now?" schtick, Vantage Point becomes a silly but entertaining thriller, the sort of thing that'll work just fine as a cheap DVD rental. Until then, you might just want to burn through a disc or two of 24.