Friday, February 25, 2011

KNIGHT & DAY (2010)

Directed By: James Mangold
Written By: Patrick O'Neill
Cinematography by: Phedon Papamichael
Editor: Quincy Z. Gunderson & Michael McCusky

CAST: Tom Cruise, Cameron Diaz, Peter Sarasgard, Paul Dano, Viola Davis, Marc Blucas, Dale Dye, Jordi Molla, Maggie Grace, Cecila Weston

I can see why Tom Cruise choose this film over salt. It has the Scream appeal of allowing him to make fun of his other over the top action films while being one itself. It also allows him to poke fun of himself and show off the comedic skills he first showcased in TROPIC THUNDER which he hoped would also bring back his image. The problem is as it has been rare that tom cruise has tackled comedy he is not as skilled In it as he thinks he is. One of the joys of his over the top action films is enjoying in the thrilling action watching it like a video game you aren’t in control of but that your friend is and he is really good at the game. Him making fun of himself in it and worse with pretty lame jokes action that isn’t that memorable and more laughable and a predictable story, make the film pretty dull.

The film was originally written as a serious spy thriller for Gene Hackman, then over the years it was changed to a action spy comedy with more emophasis on the comedy then anything else. When tom cruise became interested the action set pieces were created. He Choose this movie over SALT and THE TOURIST both of which he felt was too similar to his MISSION IMPOSSIBLE movies. Ironic though that this film seems more like the M.I. movies then anything else or a bad serious spoof of them.

The film also tries to go for a classic CHARADE like feel of being a spy film but being a charming romantic tale with tongue planted firmly in cheek. Only in the classic the two stars were charming and skilled and depended more on wordplay and flirtation with occasional action. Where as in this film it’s action with occasional flirting. The film tries to be too many things at once and feels like a hodgepodge film put together by committee. The film maybe could have been something if the two leads had been two strong personalities. But with the stars you have here though they are able they are more or less transparent and don’t seem to have too much to them or there characters. While watching this film I tried to imagine it as a lightweight sequel to the mission impossible films. I figured since Cruise is getting older, his missions are not as complex as they were in the other films.

If anything the film comes off more as a farce. It’s a shame as The Director James Mangold does have talent and deserves better but this seems like a chance at the big time for him and he didn’t bring his A game. I’m sure it’s not totally his fault either. He has shown himself to be a versatile director in the past and hopefully this is just a speed bump in his career path. I dearly wish tom Cruise who I actually like makes entertaining films again if he would have taken SALT. it would have been a step mor ein the right direction a more hardcore version of what he normally does. Even if I didn’t like that film all that much more then this.

I will give the film some credit it does try to entertain the audience. It has a lot of energy it just fails on most attempts.

Wait for cable.


1 comment:

  1. It's definitely a hodgepodge. I liked the opening stuff on the plane, but then we got bad CG of the crash. The worst thing for me was that it went on too long in too many weird directions. I don't see why they had to take the very post-modernist view of the tables turning and Diaz becoming the action hero. You know, the reversal bits. Why can't a woman just be naive and scared in a movie? I didn't like making her an action hero too by the end. There were definitely moments I liked. For awhile it was like watching a Bond movie from the Bond girl's perspective. I liked that idea. It's fun enough if you turn off your brain. But it's the romance angle that really is its undoing.