Flicksadaweek: The Bourne Supremacy, Knockaround Guys, Walking Tall
I use different media as accompaniment to my writing, depending on what type of work I’m doing. Fiction demands blues; the Florida crime script I’ve been working on has flowed astonishingly (disturbingly) well when I’ve listened to Jan Hammer’s Miami Vice soundtrack. Opie & Anthony on XM always make for good websurfing accompaniment. And when I’m doing the first passes on journalism, I enjoy having a good dopey movie on in the background. The three flicks I watched this week certainly fall into that category. The Bourne Supremacy is killer escapist entertainment, all European car chases and CIA intrigue. Ludlum was one of the first “real” writers I ever read way back in early high school, and the Bourne flicks nail the international air of conspiracy running throughout the novels. The cast is first-rate–Joan Allen, one of my favorite actresses; Julia Stiles, another one of the good ones; Brian Cox, who always looks like the jolly uncle that’ll threaten to kill you when Mom’s out of the room; and Matt Damon, who kicks the crap out of that fop Richard Chamberlain in playing the role of Jason Bourne.
Knockaround Guys is that rare fish-out-of-water flick that doesn’t once stoop to cheap laughs. A bunch of Brooklyn mobsters head to Montana to recover some misplaced money; problems ensue. Barry Pepper is the standout here, but Seth Green is surprisingly good as the screwup who loses the money; the sad resignation in his eyes during his final scene is light-years away from Scott Evil in the Austin Powers movies.
Walking Tall is just about the shortest film I’ve seen in awhile–not even seventy-five minutes. I’ve waited longer for freakin’ pizzas. As a result, there’s not much there beyond the basic smash-’em-up plot, but the players are all standouts. Between this and The Getaway, I’m now convinced that The Rock can handle the mantle of “next Schwarzenegger.” Johnny Knoxville is demented without mugging for the camera, and Neal McDonough is the same just-this-side-of-oily smooth character he plays in Boomtown and Band of Brothers. Recommended–hell, you can watch the whole damn thing while you’re waiting for your lady to get ready to go out.