The Current War: Director’s Cut

Just before the turn of the 19th century the battle to determine which electrical system would become the global standard raged on with a cut throat vengeance. In one corner inventor and genius Thomas Edison (Benedict Cumberbatch) and his DC system, in the other, businessman George Westinghouse (Michael Shannon) aided by inventor and genius Nikola Tesla (Nicholas Hoult) and their AC system. Lies, deceptions, electric chairs, and world’s fairs, who would rule the world and who would history remember, the two might not be mutually exclusive. Directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon and written by Michael Mitnick this potentially crackling shower of sparks unfortunately arrives with barely a pulse; partially a victim of circumstance surrounding the film’s original release but mainly due to the painfully dry writing and the subdued direction of very capable actors. Additionally, further relegation of Tesla, arguably the most interesting cast member, to barely a supporting role seems to be gross oversight, even with additional footage added to this Director’s cut. On the positive, art direction, costumes, set design, and graphics make this a pretty film to look at despite the lack of lightning otherwise, it’s just not enough to advance the droll pace of this seemingly unending hour and 47 minutes. Pass. The Current War: Director’s Cut is rated PG-13.