Shoot 'Em Up Reviews
The first thing I noticed about this crazy 'robocop/total recall' topping death tollathon was the action gun battles are really well done and look realistic, there's no obvious CGI effects in there and its all very gritty and cool, over the top but cool.
The whole thing is really dumb lets be honest, the story is awful and the main lead, Owen, is totally miscast in my opinion, he's just not this kind of action man and can't fit the role. It is funny though, gives Arnie a run for the money with wisecracks after gunning down the latest henchman...of which there is no end of of course.
There are some stupid sequences that do spoil the realism and hardcore violence, jumping out of a plane with a following midair gun battle? jumping into a car through a sunroof from off a tall building? and catapolting through a windscreen after crashing head on with a van and landing safely inside to comfortably shoot everybody!?. All of which are too computer gamey for me, but you have to expect that with this type of film, after all the title says it all.
Its good for the gun battles and bloodshed, if it was Arnie I would be wetting myself with glee shame it isn't. But its good to see a good old fashioned bloodbath, and for once with little CGI shit.
I loved Clive Owen as the lead; there's plenty of him and bad guy Paul Giamatti- kind of atypical in this kind of role. Female lead Monica Bellucci is great; there's not enough of her. There is enough of carrots, stunts, and body count. These are some of the most mind blowing stunts ever. Dpn't question the plot or the physics, just have fun. The movie's a lot like Motley Crue's "Kick Start My Heart, " wjich appropriately plays during the final credits.
Normally, I'm all for ridiculous balls to the wall bullet fest action movies like this, but I wasn't really blown away by this one. Sure, it's quirky, wacky, and sometimes really creative, inventive, and fun, but that doesn't mean it all adds up to something that's good or worthwhile as a whole. I did dig that this was basically a love action and violent Looney Tunes episode (and there's tons of references to back this up, especially some very obvious and unsubtle ones), but all the references, wackiness, and insane set pieces (I never knew carrots could be used in the ways that they are here, or that I'd ever see shootouts take place during both sex and childbirth...and that you could use a gun to cut the umbilical cord), but stuff like this is just a lot fo flash with no real meat behind it.
Also, as for this film giving John Woo a run for his money...nice try, but not quite. His films might have insane gun battles that test one's suspension of disbelief, but they also have a strong sense of artistry, style, and some weight to them. This is just hollow spectacle for the sake of it. There's some great needle drops sure, which is a big help, but even then, this film just comes off as trying way too hard.
Not only that, but there's some really sloppily handled messages (and mixed ones, to boot) concerning gun laws. Ultimately, the film coems off as a tad irresponsible and unclear, and that's a bad sign. I know, I should jsut shut up and enjoy, right? Well, I did...at times. It jsut didn't last, and this is ultiamtely a film I'm surprised to be feeling rather negative about. None of the cast are ruining their careers here, but they're not exactly doing them many favors. However, it is nice to see Giamatti change it up once and a while, and he at least looks like he's having some fun.
All in all, a real missed opportunity. This film wants so bad to be the next great cult classic. Too bad thta writer/director Michael Davis didn't get the memo that a film can't try to be a campy cult classic...it just has to come naturally.
Full disclosure, this movie gets an extra half a star for Monica Bellucci. I don't remember exactly what she does in this movie (pretty sure she's a prostitute, so more points for that), or if she was any good, but ... it's Monica Bellucci. Someone knew what (s)he was doing when casting.
Late at nighttime, in an unnamed U.S. metropolis, an introverted man (Clive Owen) sits at a bus stop. A pregnant woman runs by, pursued by a man with a gun. With unwillingness, the man at the bus stop rescues her and assists with the baby's delivery, while supplementary pursuer's fire at them, as well as the gang's particularly spiteful boss, an insightful man named Hertz (Paul Giamatti). Our hero, known only as Smith, determines to save the child and discover out why Hertz needs the baby dead. At a confined bordello, he tries to employ a lactating hooker to observe the child, but things rapidly go sky-high, and this rough and ready family is roughly immediately on the run.
Hertz: Guns don't kill people, but they sure help!
This movie is seriously a truly enjoyable movie. It's complete with action, sharp dialogue, and unforgettable lines. It is what it promises, a 90 minute action crammed romp. The wonderful Clive Owen stars as Mr. Smith, a man with a mission. Owen is ideal in this part, including everything you'd wish for in a movie akin to this (heck, he even kills an assassin with a carrot!). The story is unbelievably impractical and the whole thing is completely improbable, but I can assure that you will be entertained. Shoot 'Em Up is a great case in point of a wonderful B-movie, or even a cult classic (watch out, The Evil Dead!).
Hertz: Do you know why a gun is better than a wife? You can put a silencer on a gun.
Very much in spoof style of it's genre, it sort of takes the mickey out of itself. It almost seems as though this was Clive Owen's consolation role of not becoming a James Bond ?? There seemed some similarities to the Bond films, particularly the cheesy one liners.
Quite over the top Action and one role of Monica Bellucci's I wasn't too keen on, but it is good cheesy fun.