Mad City Reviews
The acting from Hoffman and Travolta is really great. I thought there would be more to Hoffman's character because in the museum he was always talking about how they need to make Sam's image look good but as soon as he goes outside for the first time he says that he is unstable. It did make me laugh that he said he had a wife that took their child with her because of 'Kramer vs. Kramer', they also talk about a TV movie in here but luckily that can't be used as a joke about the film saying that this should have gone to TV because this is good. Although I doubt they'd be talking about something like that right at the end of the film as everything is heated and they must have mentioned Mel Gibson in this because they were filming in 1996 and 'Braveheart' won big at The Oscars that year. However, despite Hoffman typically giving a good performance, at some points it did look like he really did not want to be here. John Travolta in this film though was really great, he perfectly captures the working man in a situation like that, he's nervous, he doesn't check behind the door in the toilet the first time he sees it open, he doesn't have all the answers, he tells Max to leave and then asks how he can trust if Max comes back again, it's all really well done. When Sam did his first interview for the TV, that part in particular was really well handled and I really felt sympathy for Sam, Travolta nailed it. I thought that he should have originally said that his only demands were to have his job back but what he actually says was even better, but like he would blame his friend for him losing his job and he cannot release all the children right at the start or else he wouldn't have any leverage. Everyone else does fine jobs also, but these two are the main focus, but I will say that the children were good.
The film looked and sounded good. The soundtrack was quite varied and the introduction for the film was very smooth, cool, slick and a little deceptive, given what it looks like Max is putting together, I knew it couldn't be a gun considering I knew the premise of the film but still, deceptive. Both the trailer and the film had a line in there about 'pushing the line' but it was different in the film to what was in the trailer but the film did have its funny lines and comedic bits between characters. I doubt it was intentional but the person we see Max trying to interview at the start was involved with money and was called Mr. Burns did make me smile, as well as someone else being called Dolan.
I was expecting there to be some revelation at the end with Hoffman's character but I'm wondering if his motivation changed from pretending to like him just to get a good story to actually being concerned about his wellbeing. We see Max focusing on the gun whenever Sam leaves it unattended throughout the whole film but maybe he was just going to take it away to be safe instead of taking it away because of it being a good news story. I saw this film ending one of two ways and it ended the second way I thought of, the first way, like I have already said is about the revelation, I really feel like this film needed a gut punch ending that really would have gotten the media manipulation point across with sledgehammer force. However, Max ending the film by saying that we did it, as well as all the other examples the film showcases, it got the point across as well, and all without needless swearing, they were around children, I know, but I can't think of anyone saying anything at all. Although, Max would be more injured than he was given what happens at the end and the credits were weird as well, they stopped before they reached the traffics lights. I also think that the film was a little longer than it probably should have been; I wasn't bored but pushing two hours felt a bit much. I am confused by the low rating as well, but then again, it didn't do well in the box office, so it makes sense but is still odd considering the talent involved. Nevertheless, 'Mad City', just to clarify, does indeed get its point across and shines from great performances from the leads.
A very typical, tame Hollywood stab at a hostage situation drama with focus on the news media manipulation of real life and death situations. Quite honestly this is a poor movie. Dustin Hoffman is borderline terrible as he lazily mutters his way through the entire movie acting almost as bored as the poor unfortunate audience, as if I had paid money to see this then I'd feel more than a little cheated. While Travolta is far from on form, but at least he's as entertaining to watch as he usually is. The script is lame brained Hollywood trash that has an interesting and important concept of a man going above and beyond to try and get his job back, but it is so poorly developed that Travolta's character comes across more as an idiot than someone worthy of any sympathy. Couple that with the kidnapped kids having no real problem with armed men keeping them hostage away from their homes and family for days on end, and the final reel that has a terrible sense of pointlessness about it. My advice, give this 90's flop a miss.
what kind gross crossing of film circles is this.