Tag Archives: Narc

A Week In Film #411: Moved

Menace II Society title screen
Menace II Society
I remember this early Hughes Brothers film – about young friends growing up in the South Central LA ‘hood with increasingly divergent values – as being significantly better than it seems to be watching it now. Shame. Memorable performance from Larenz Tate as O-Dog.

Narc title screen
Joe Carnahan’s excellent low budget crime thriller – more or less shot guerrilla-style – stands the set of time, thanks in large part to the performances of its two leads, Jason Patric and Ray Liotta, the precision of Carnahan’s creative vision, and the abilities of his cinematographer Alex Nepomniaschy and his editor John Gilroy in enabling him to realise that vision.

Final Destination title screen
Final Destination
Silly, throwaway, but an exhilarating ride nonetheless – a horror film with a hook; a kid has premonitions of bad stuff, cheats death, but death wants a rematch. From screenwriter Jeffrey Reddick, tightened up by X Files veterans James Wong and Glen Morgan, with a largely likeable and (at the time) not over-exposed young cast which includes Devon Sara, Ali Larter and Sean William Scott. Tasty cameos for Tony Todd and Roger Guenveur Smith.

Sphere title screen
Frankly dull and definitely half-baked SF nonsense, adapted from a Michael Crichton novel, about some alien spacecraft crashed at the bottom of the sea and a multi-disciplinary team of experts sent to make contact with the extra-terrestrials, etc. Definitely not Barry Levinson’s finest hour, and neither is it Dustin Hoffman’s or Sharon Stone’s. Just boring and nonsensical.

A Week In Film #199: Monsoon season

The Silence Of The Lambs
Ham vs ham. It rubs the lotion on its skin or else it gets the hose again. That whole weird shit stopover in a cage in the middle of a courtroom in Tennessee with Chris Isaak as a SWAT dude. The more times I watch this film the less sure I am of whether I like it or not.

Goodfellas title screen
Shonky, overcooked, flashy, but still fun.

Narc title screen
Joe Carnahan’s low budget cops-and-graft gritter, with strong commitment from Jason Patric and Ray Liotta in the lead roles. Not the most original of plots, but excellently executed, and moments of real polish – the opening foot chase for one, and each of the visits to suspects’ houses.

A Week In Film #027: Poop idle

Shoot 'Em Up title screen

Shoot ‘Em Up

Clive Owen as a mysterious man drawn into a complicated web of intrigue after coming to the aid of a pregnant woman being chased by gunmen.

Now, I like Clive Owen (I’m a fan of Close My Eyes, Croupier, I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead, Children Of Men and Inside Man, and the Sharman and Second Sight TV series); I like Monica Bellucci (Dobermann etc); and I most definitely like Monica Bellucci as a lactating hooker.

I like how this film starts, and gets down to business straight away, no preamble, no exposition, just foot down and through the gears. And I like how (certainly to start with) this preposterous actioner is played out just how its title suggests – in full-on, video game style, lots of pointless running around and jumping and shooting and unlimited magazines and laws-of-physics-defying physicality.

But then, as it slows down, it attempts to rationalise the irrational, to explain the inexplicable, to hint at some sort of reason behind all of this silly nonsense. Trying to do this this undermined my enjoyment. As such, FAIL.

Knocked Up title screen

Knocked Up
On paper, a repulsive film – drunken one-night stand, unwanted pregnancy, woman pressured into dieting for her job, idle slob the father – but this one has real charm, as seems to be the way with Judd Apatow and his rep company of likable slackers (like lead actor Seth Rogen). Katherine Heigl excels as Alison, the woman at the centre of it all.

Zack And Miri Make A Porno title screen

Zack And Miri Make A Porno
Non-View Askewniverse, non-Jersey Kevin Smith film, with Seth Rogen and Elizabeth Smith as platonic friends down on their luck who decide to make a skin flick to bail themselves out of financial trouble. You can guess how it pans out, but despite its predictability I really rather enjoyed it, and so did the LLF.

Smokin' Aces title screen

Smokin’ Aces
Joe Narc Carnahan does a convoluted, colourful actioner about a bunch of law enforcement types, hitmen, bounty hunters and psychopaths all trying to get to a Vegas-showman-turned-Mob-boss-wannabe (Jeremy Piven), who’s holed up in the penthouse of a Lake Tahoe hotel. It doesn’t work, but there’s interesting elements. A gayed-up Ben Affleck, Common giving a great – practically Shakespearean – performance, Taraji P Henson and Alicia Keys as assassins with sapphic undertones, a trio of redneck Nazi nutter brothers, and an ADHD kid are amongst the highlights, but ultimately it just doesn’t pull together with any satisfaction.

Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace title screen

Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace
Never seen it before, and I don’t think I will again, willingly. A clumsy mess of dull exposition, extended toy adverts and shonky CGI.

Star Wars Episode II: Attack Of The Clones title screen

Star Wars Episode II: Attack Of The Clones
Never seen it before, and I don’t think I will again, willingly. A clumsy mess of dull exposition, extended toy adverts and shonky CGI.