The Town(2010) review
Synopsis: As he plans his next job, a longtime thief tries to balance his feelings for a bank manager connected to one of his earlier heists, as well as the FBI agent looking to bring him and his crew down. First off, I'm just gonna address Rebecca Hall's performance in this film. The reason for this is because I somewhat slated her for being a "substandard performer", when in fact, her performance in The Town was excelled far beyond that of her performance in Vicky Cristina Barcelona. Just thought I should get that out of the way before I begin the review. So this is me, beginning the review. Nnnnnnnnnow- I was freakin' excited to watch this, simply because Affleck is da bomb. Being his second major Directorial outing, it was nice seeing him perform as well as direct, it made for a fantastic combination, and there was also an admirable cast present in this film, including Jeremy Renner(The Hurt Locker), Jon Hamm(Mad Men), and Blake Lively(Gossip Girl) who added to this already commendable list of names. The unique plot and intricacies of the story reminded me closely of that from Inside Man, for example. What did get at my neck, though, was how the group was able to get away with so much in broad daylight. It's like "Sure, let's hold up a security van at freakin' 9:00AM in the morning and just give anyone who tries to do anything an evil look. Yeah, that'll scare em" Just didn't seem to make sense a certain times, but the other 80% of the time the ways in which the gang got out of tight situations was pretty clever. I did enjoy this film, there were minor similarities to films such as Training Day, Inside Man, and Brooklyn's Finest which drew me to this film and made it an overall action-packed and exciting experience. 7/10 Kazed.
Crash (2004) mini-reviewSynopsis: Issues of race and gender cause a group of strangers in Los Angeles to physically and emotionally collide in this drama. Crash is an intense, cleverly series of intertwined stories crammed into one movie. Each 'tale', if you will, has a clever little moral hidden at each of their conclusions, and is exactly what made this film as thought provoking as it was. Each performance from this star-studded cast was as impressive as the plot lines their respective characters were part of, notably Matt Dillon in his role as the racist veteran cop. How he portrayed his character was as charismatic as Dillon could probably get. Thandie Newton and Terrence Howard play the 'victimised' couple harassed by Dillon's character; with Newton encountering the racist officer in a clever twist of fate. There were some emotional moments in the film, three, actually, which stood out for me; The scene with the gun and the locksmith, the scene with Dillon and Newton, and toward the end where we are shown the conclusions for each of the stories. It was so effectively edited, so intricately stitched together making it so seamless. Crash is an incredibly clever film, it seems as though more films are beginning to use the same format(Valentine's Day, He's Just Not That Into You) because it's such an effective way to tell multiple stories at once. 8.5/10 Kazed
Green Zone (2010)Ok, hang on for this... The Pentagon has a lied about WMDs and a lone soldier and an irish/american accented CIA operative (Brendan Gleeson) take on the entire US Military Machine to find out how and why - with the help of Damon's trusty arab sidekick (Khalid Abdalla - United 93) that follows him everywhere in a Toyota Corolla. Somewhere in hollywood there's probably a shareholder for the Green Zone movie, pointing at The Hurt Locker and saying "We should make it like that!" But alas, this person will not be heard in the hollywood machine. Green Zone is good. Unfortunately it's only good. It could have been great - especially if some had not hired the hyperactive camera operator from Cloverfield to hold the camera. A basic tenet of filmmaking for the big should be 'don't wave the camera around so much that it makes people vomit in the cinema'. Hey - it works great on 24 - but that's small screen. Damon is up against Greg Kinnear, who seems to have translated his part as "Evil Captain Amazing" from Mystery Men. It's not much of a match and the end is as predictable as "and then we'll have a chase with guns and helicopters and a big finish" - did I mention it was produced by Tim "Smoking Aces" Bevan? Apart from that, Matt Damon is on form, as is his cast, despite a spoon fed story and politically / racially questionable story mechanics. Let me just validate that - Damon meets a voluntary informant called... called... Freddy. Apologies, I can't remember his real name as he only mentions it once in the film then tells Damon to call him Freddy. This is presumably to help the audience relate to Freddy as being a 'good guy' with a western name and not a 'bad guy' because they all have difficult arabic names. Yes, as you may have guessed from that last criticism, this film a one-sided glorification of a made-up internal resistance against the US Administration about finding WMD's. We are expected to believe that the CIA were also hoodwinked into believing the WMD story - as if they didn't know there weren't any - and then... no. I'll stop there. The story is stupid, to put it mildly, and full of gaping holes. But despite story issues, director Paul Greengrass has done a fabulous job, visually. Once we look over the completely pants story and two-dimensional writing, we find an audio visual treat that barrels along at a great pace. The action is fantastic and war film and gaming fans will recognise and love legitimate military manoeuvres and operations. This film has a target audience. It serves that audience well. You may be that audience. If you are then.. I.. will.. type.. slowly.. for.. you.. Sorry, couldn't resist. Ok, bottom line: Green Zone is good. Worth watching in the cinema. Buy popcorn and enjoy. Don't think any further, it will hurt. 7/10