Saturday, October 23, 2010

Smokin’ Aces- A retrospective

Just recently I was asked what I thought of the movie “Smokin’ Aces.” Honestly I haven’t thought of that movie in forever.  But thinking about it reminds me of a few memorable things: It had a crazy number of cameo characters and it had a twist ending that was really wretched. I also remember enough explosions it’d make Michael Bay scream in ecstasy. 
The story takes place in Las Vegas where a magician/gangster Buddy Israel, played by Jeremy Piven, is hiding in his penthouse because there is a million dollar hit out on him for his heart.  Well, it brings out all the crazies who want the money.  Honestly that is the sole charm of the movie.  Seeing all the nuts go after this money.  It’s an ultra-violent version of “It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World”.
            All the while I kept thinking this movie tried so hard to be a Guy Ritchie movie.  It wanted so hard to be a “Snatch” or “Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.” But if you have a huge cast like that there is a problem.  You have to make me give a crap about someone.  I didn’t care whether Israel lived or died.  I didn’t really side with any killer and I didn’t get to know the F.B.I agents enough to care about their losses or cause. 
            So when the two central things that make a movie work, plot and character, are less developed than a Curious George book I’d say something is the matter.  At least renting is the way to see it.  It’s not awful. There are some laughs but you can do so much better with your time.  For me to say that says a lot considering some of the sewage I’ve seen.

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