Bliss Review: A Convoluted Mess With Interesting Ideas That Fails At the Execution

The Illuminerdi's review for Amazon Prime Video's newest original movie 'Bliss', starring Owen Wilson and Salma Hayek.
Bliss Owen Wilson Salma Hayek

Our review for Amazon Prime Video’s newest original movie, Bliss starring Owen Wilson and Salma Hayek.

What if The Matrix and Project Power had a baby, which was then adopted by Westworld? That baby would be Bliss. The movie is a mess, director and screenwriter Mike Cahill has a lot of great ideas, which he just threw into one script and tried to combine them into one movie, hoping it would work. Well, it didn’t.

Bliss takes its main inspiration from one of the greatest sci-fi movies ever, The Matrix. That part of the movie works to a certain degree, but as the story continues it adds drug addiction, a divided society, a love story, the beginnings of a revolution, superpowers and a family drama. But it doesn’t stop there, there are many more idea’s that the movie teases and tries to explore. The problem is that there are just way too many topics and themes, so many that the movie gets extremely convoluted and essentially confusing. I straight up doesn’t work.

Salma Hayek’s character, Isabel, is basically just there to explain the rules and ideas to Owen Wilson’s character, Greg, who is essentially the audience’s POV character in the movie, doesn’t have any clue, what is going on. This goes so far that even Isabel at one point doesn’t understand it anymore.

Speaking of Salma Hayek and Owen Wilson. Their performances are a mixed bag. They constantly switch between solid, over the top, and straight up bad. It just is absolutely confusing as the tone of the movie does rely on their performances, as you simply get nothing out of the screenplay, that helps you in any way understand, what is at stake.


And yet the movie does manage to keep the viewer invested, as you try to pick up all the little details, that help you solve the puzzle, even though there really isn’t anything to solve. I managed to pick up little clues in the background, such as similar looking people in the background. That might have been a clue to one of the movies many topics or just an editing mistake. This is for the viewer to decide.

Bliss is a convoluted mess, that addresses way too many ideas and forgets to put them in a working story. Many of the film’s themes are interesting and certainly would have made a great movie if they were fully explored. There is a lot more to be explored as it does keep the audiences guessing by trying to solve the mystery. However, it will leave them with questions that the movie didn’t even ask.


Bliss poster

Bliss Synopsis

An unfulfilled man (Owen Wilson) and a mysterious woman (Salma Hayek) believe they are living in a simulated reality, but when their newfound ‘Bliss’ world begins to bleed into the ‘ugly’ world they must decide what’s real and where they truly belong. (Amazon Prime Video)

Bliss is Rated R for drug content, language, some sexual material and violence. It’s globally available on Amazon Prime Video. What do you guys think? Are you planning to watch Bliss? Have you already watched it, if so how did you like it? Let’s discuss everything in the comments down below and on our Twitter.



Finn Schlote

Finn Schlote

Finn thinks and talks about movies all day, has a strong interest in how movies are made and he loves great cinematography. Comedy or horror, arthouse or big-budget blockbuster, Finn watches everything. He is a passionate Blu-Ray collector and is still waiting for a Jumper (2008) sequel.