12 November 2010

Unstoppable



LIARS!!

If it is called Unstoppable, I expect a tremendous crash. Okay, I had to get that out of my system. When it comes to either of the Scott brothers, you have to take into account many variables. Which one? Ridley? Tony? Then, you have to look at who they have in it. Denzel? Crowe? Look into the track record with that combination. Finally, you have to look at the running time. 90? 120? 150? Are you making a flow chart? You should be. This is Tony with Denzel in their fifth movie together at 96 minutes. I love the 90 minute zone. By the time you realize that the movie is bad, it’s over.

During the opening credits, I noticed a lot of familiar names. Denzel Washington, Chris Pine, Rosario Dawson, Kevin Dunn, Kevin Corrigan and T.J. Miller. After the opening credits, the tension and action start, and it doesn’t let up. After a series of human errors, train 7-7-7 gets away and begins its journey.

The characters are simple. Old, soon to retire, experienced, hardened veteran engineer. New, school taught, rookie conductor. Smart government guy that is hated, but right. Mean, stupid, worried about money corporate guy. Smarter than corporate boss manager. There is nothing new in this film. But, unlike many of Tony Scott’s more recent movies, this was paced great, and a real joy to watch.

Unstoppable was a great popcorn-flick with plenty of action, but low on brains. I couldn’t stand how stupid people were portrayed. They talk about how explosive the phenol is in the cars, and the casualties it would cause. So, everyone comes right up to the track to take videos and pictures. Why wouldn’t a Hazmat crew keep them at a safe distance? Why wouldn’t people want to be at a safe distance? At one point, the plan is to derail the train. Everyone is waiting on the side to watch the derailment. Ridiculous. The plot holes are large enough to drive the runaway train through. Maybe that was the point? One thing that did get annoying was all the news reporter voiceovers. They narrated the story way too much.

So, the one thing I had a beef with was the budget. I have read that it could be as high as $100 million dollars. That is nuts. When was the last time Denzel had a movie make more than that? American Gangster (2007). Before that? Remember the Titans (2000). Before that? The Pelican Brief (1993). He is just not as big of a draw as people think he is. How about Tony Scott? His only movies to break the nine figure mark are Top Gun, Beverly Hills Cop II, and Enemy of the State. I just don’t understand Hollywood. There was no reason for this movie to cost that much. Most of it is spent in a railway control room with Rosario and the engine 1206 with Denzel and Chris Pine. The exterior shots were just a train shooting by. If Hollywood has this much money to blow on a movie, I have a script I would love for them to read.

I really enjoyed this movie. It was a nonstop action adventure. I have to admit, I dug a little into the actual story that this was based on. It was far less dramatic. But, that is Hollywood. Verdict: See this over the atrocity that is Skyline. I thoroughly enjoyed the ride, pardon the pun.

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