Saturday, December 6, 2014
NOT SAFE FOR WORK (2014)
Directed By: Joe Johnston
Written By: Adam Mason & Simon Boyes
Cinematography By: Jonathan Taylor
Editor: Rick Shaine
Cast: Max Minghella, Michael Gladis, Franke J. Allison, Molly Hagan, Christian Clemson, Tom Gallop, JJ Feild
The ambitious legal assistant Tom Miller works at the Rosen, Byres and Emmerich Attorneys at Law and secretly dates the gorgeous clerk Anna. His company has presently two major cases: Hartcourt vs. Denning Pharmaceutical, against a powerful corporation, and Gambizzi Case, against a mafia family. On the eve of the judgment of the Hartcourt case, Alan Emmerich releases all the employees early in the afternoon and he also fires Tom for snooping around the Gambizzi case. When Tom is leaving the building with Anna, he sees a man leaving a suitcase on the floor and another man wearing a suit taking the suitcase and going to the 34th floor of the building. Tom decides to follow him and soon he discovers that he man is actually a hit-man. Soon Tom is trapped on the floor with the killer since his access card is deactivated. Who hired the hit-man?
How the mighty have fallen few years Back Director Joe Johnston had just made THE WOLFMAN and CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER. How did he get stuck with this film as his next outing. I am hoping contractual engagement. As he is better than this by the numbers thriller.
This film begins with a riveting beginning that seems like it is perfectly set up to continue the story. Then when the rest of the movie unravels you realize that was probably the most exciting part of the film.
This film is an oddity as it is released by a major studio has a known quality director. Though the film came about with little to no fanfare and doesn't seem to be a title that was meant for theaters and then just decided the home video market. I believe it was always intended for it.
The film goes through the motions and is competently directed, but for a thriller lacks the edge of your seat excitement and thrills. It offers no real surprises and plays it by the book. Even the revelations are kind of expected.
While that seems to play perfectly if you want the audience to imagine what they would do in this type of situation. It doesn't add much for the audience watching in the form of entertainment. This smaller scaled version of die hard without a quarter of the action.
The film seems also to be missing something. It is just way too bland and on the nose. It feels like somehow or someway something or at less pieces of the film or story are cut out. As it feels way too simple and straight forward. Maybe I have just been watching too many movies that try To be clever that when something simple comes along you suspect something is wrong.
The film plays pretty small scale. Hardly any characters throughout the film. The villain of the piece is generally nasty though with a white collar polish. By the end a certain notion is introduced that there is wider conspiracy at work. Which seems like a basis set-up for a sequel. Though even if not seems a nice development.
The lead Max Minghella who has been in a bunch of films previously. This is the first time I have seen him in a major release as the lead. The only problem I found with him is that he does nothing wrong in his performance. He just never seems to have the gusto or doesn't seem the right for the film.
All in all a nice time waster that doesn't seem to have enough energy to keep itself intrigued.