It's an age old question: if you were a superhero, would you use your powers for good or evil? Some of us like to imagine ourselves saving children from burning buildings. Others like to imagine what it would be like to get back at the old lady downstairs who knocks her broom handle through their floors. Chronicle takes the question to a literal level by testing it on three high school boys--the class president, the intellectual tool, and the downtrodden loner. They stumble upon something unknown and absorb superhuman powers, but the true test, as always, is learning to control these powers. The entire movie is "chronicled" via various different videocameras, which is an interesting devise for a movie like this even if it distracts from the actually content on screen from time to time. The plot runs through the familiar teen-movie themes of bullying and disconnecting from those around you, but the actors manage to pull it off to at least make the familiar ride enjoyable the second time around.
Is it a tired and old morality play about the consequences of too much power? Of course it is. But if it ain't broke, why fix it, right? So maybe the message was a little heavy-handed, and maybe it was all something we've seen before a thousand and one times. Still, I went it knowing exactly what I was getting into, and on its own standards, the movie delivered everything I expected from it. I got into the characters, felt for their plights, and all at a good pace. Predictable and cliché at times, but a solid and just plain fun film, which is more than most mainstream movies seem to be able to brag about these days.