Thursday, July 03, 2008
Movie Reviews: WANTED
25-year-old Wes (James McAvoy) was the most disaffected, cube-dwelling drone the planet had ever known. Until he met a woman named Fox (Angelina Jolie). After his estranged father is murdered, the deadly sexy Fox recruits Wes into the Fraternity, a secret society that trains Wes to avenge his dad's death by unlocking his dormant powers. As she teaches him how to develop lightning-quick reflexes and phenomenal agility, Wes discovers this team lives by an ancient, unbreakable code: carry out the death orders given by fate itself. With wickedly brilliant tutors—including the Fraternity's enigmatic leader, Sloan (Morgan Freeman)—Wes grows to enjoy all the strength he ever wanted. But, slowly, he begins to realize there is more to his dangerous associates than meets the eye. Wes will come to learn what no one could ever teach him: he alone controls his destiny.
Cast: James McAvoy, Morgan Freeman, Angelina Jolie, Terence Stamp, Thomas Kretschmann, Common
Director: Timur Bekmambetov
Genres: Action Thriller, Fantasy Adventure, Action....
Opened June 27, 2008
Runtime: 1 hr. 50 min.
Rated R for strong bloody violence throughout, pervasive language and some sexuality.
Wanted, Russian director Timur Bekmambetov American debut is audacious, stupid and kind of fun as well. The plot is decidedly inane and more than downright silly at times. While the majority of the masses may not know this but Wanted is in fact a comic book movie and it traffics in the language and action of them. The film doesn't exist in the real world but instead in a fantasy world that looks a lot like ours. Wanted feels just like most superhero origin stories. It's got all the trappings, the sorted past of our hero which leads him to his destiny, training for him to master his powers and so on and so on. If you are looking for something fresh and original you'll need to keep looking. A lot of things here are retreads of other films, The Matrix being the most obvious, as well as the aforementioned superhero caveats. So this is just a terrible movie correct? Not really, while it travels some well worn paths it does it quite well and keeps you quite engaged in the clichéd story. The film's first 20 minutes feels like a weird mix of Fight Club and Office Space mixed with a slightly more pronounced bite. It's interesting enough and it allows the story to dig its fangs into you. McAvoy gives a fun performance, think Toby McGuire if Peter Parker was destined to become a deadly assassin, and really does an excellent job as the office drone turned super assassin. Angelina Jolie clearly relishes these kinds of roles and here she's all vamp bony badass. Morgan Freeman isn't given too much to do aside from appear as the authority figure and recite a few lines that are supposed to sound important. It's a shame as he could have brought a lot more to the part than he ultimately asked to do by the choppy and awkward script. Still even with all its faults the outlandish bullet time action this film's just kind of fun to watch.