Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Knight and Day

Movie goers are being a little strange this year I have to say. This is now the second action flick I've seen this summer that wasn't as bad as people were saying. Yet if you look at the box office numbers it seems like Tom Cruise's latest is a big stinky turd. I want to assure you that it is not. For starters I have a lot of respect for Director James Mangold. The guy has been pretty rock solid in my view with successes like Cop Land, Girl Interrupted, Walk the Line and one of my favorites 3:10 to Yuma. Knight & Day is his biggest blockbuster to date and it's a really well done fun action flick, honest. Despite what you might think about Tom Cruise he knows how to pick good material and he doesn't disappoint here. Yes it's silly over the top action, first off if you can't enjoy yourself in one of these films then you honestly shouldn't bother. That being said they take an interesting track with the formula. Instead of following from the point of view of the superhero we're actually following the Damsel in distress, Cameron Diaz. Personally I'm not a big fan of hers but she actually isn't too bad here. The trailers actually make her seem more annoying then she is in the movie. This is the summer people, explosions and silliness are par for the course get that through your thick skulls!
June Havens (Cameron Diaz) picked the wrong flight. As she boards her plane back to her native Boston she finds herself in the middle of an Spy Game dictated by super spy, and possibly crazy person, Roy Miller (Tom Cruise). Roy takes a liking to June and it's unclear whether he wants her around just to protect her or because he's fallen for her. They end up traveling James Bond style throughout Europe in order to evade rogue agents and bad ass arms dealers.
The script is pretty funny and Tom Cruise completely takes advantage of it. He's not taking himself seriously and that's a good thing. You can see he's trying to get back in fans good graces by putting on that big grin and hoping that people will just forget about all the couch jumping and silliness about Thetans, but I guess he still has a ways to go before he can reach the top again. But really some of the action pieces here were really great and again it was pretty funny. A little too much Cameron Diaz can spoil some of the fun but really Mangold toned her down a lot. I could almost see him redoing a take and telling her to take the Bubbly annoying shit down a peg or two. There were a couple places here where the action gets stilted mainly to provide a gag about being drugged. The first time they knock her out it's kinda funny but it happens a couple more times and its hard not to give a little groan. Plus you are really interested to see how the hell he's gonna get her out of some of these situations--although a part of me does appreciate the humor in the way they were staged as she tries to stay awake. Not quite sure why Peter Sarsgaard, Viola Davis and Paul Dano are in this movie but they do ok. Although I'm starting to wonder why Viola Davis has to keep taking these roles in Law Abiding Citizen and in this one. She seems to be wanting to up her cred in tough action flicks, I think she's a great actress but she needs to stop. Really, Viola,, please stop. Also this role was really beneath Sarsgaard too, maybe he just needed a paycheck, but he kinda needs to get back to his roots too.
Anyway it's a fun flick, terrible title, but fun flick and it's truly a fun time for all. So if you don't get a chance to see Predators this coming weekend go and see this one instead.

Grade: 3 Buckets

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