This entry was posted on Friday, December 28th, 2007 at 10:32 pm and is filed under Action, Action/Comedy, NEW ON VIDEO, S. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
Director: Michael Davis
Starring: Clive Owen, Paul Giamatti, Monica Bellucci, Stephen McHattie
I don’t usually like these balls-to-the-wall full speed action features, but writer/director Michael Davis manages to trump the genre in the same way that Planet Terror trumped the zombie zone. He overdoes everything, and uses zippy dialog, subtle humor, and exaggerated action direction, that drips with style, and is choreographed to a hot soundtrack to make it all work. The story is a bit tricky, but the dialog between Clive Owen and Paul Giamatti, (who plays one of the best villains of the year) is priceless.
Smith (Clive Owen), an angry, anti-establishment, anti-hero, is minding his own business, enjoying a cup of coffee and a carrot at a bus stop, when a pregnant woman staggers past him, soon followed by a big, rude a-hole with a gun and a bad attitude. Soon, the carrot is shoved through the bad guy’s head (Smith has more uses for carrots than DeBeers), and Smith is shooting it out with bad guys with one hand, and delivering a baby with the other. And all of this is in the first 7 minutes of the film. Smith ends up on the run with the baby and a heart-of-gold hooker (yup, another one of those), played by Monica Bellucci. On his tail, is Hertz, played with personality and humor by Paul Giamatti, and a battalion of thugs, who couldn’t hit the ground with water from a hose, in the true action tradition. They might as well as have just been dressed in body bags, but at least in this movie, an explanation (albeit lame), is offered for their incompetence – no matter, we are all about the exaggeration, here.
Michael Davis pulls out all of the stereotypes of the action genre, acknowledges them, and then takes them further than anyone else. This, and the delivery of great dialog by Owen and Giamatti, is what makes this movie entertaining. It won’t appeal to the anti-action crowd, but fans of junk like The Transporter, will love it, of course, but so will those who are normally bored by the monotonous repetition of poorly written action flicks. This one is fresh and has enough tongue in cheek humor to entertain many action bashers, as well.