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Posted October 1, 2010
A SECOND VIEWING HELPED A LOT
The biggest "killers" of the film are timing and the editor's difficulty in trying to show all things at once over the course of the entire flick. The characters are great and the story was simple, but the film didn't keep the focus on piven's character. This is a cool flick with some really great scenes, but the cow was milked too much to make it a really great film. Other work by the director are similar in terms of quality, in that acting and a few great ideas offset each film's expositions.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted October 1, 2010
Busy, Blustery, Nosy, and Overpopulated
Trying to keep track of the huge cast of characters, keeping their various allegiances to the plethora of participating assailants, requires a scorecard in the film SMOKIN' ACES. Writer/Director Joe Carnahan has style and the film's similarity to the many other cop/mob caper movies is evident, but Carnahan like to blitz the eye of the viewer with so much visual information (multiple tracks, quick scene flashes, unexplained flashbacks, etc) that when coupled with a soundtrack that is burdened with overlapping voices and very loud 'music' makes the story confusing. The last remnant of the Mafia lies in Las Vegas, and the FBI, various gangs, and detectives are out to either court the supposed willing informer, lounge comedian Buddy 'Aces' Israel (Jeremy Piven), or kill him before he squeals his apparent vital information. Israel is hiding out in Tahoe in a penthouse papered with drugs, prostitutes, bodyguards, and pursing him are hired assassins, cops, FBI agents, and competing mobs. In the course of the film nearly everyone gets shot, tortured, killed, or maimed and the blood and set destruction are a primary ingredients. The large cast includes Ben Affleck (in a very quick role), Ryan Reynolds (who is actually the star), Andy Garcia, Jason Bateman, Alicia Keys, Ray Liotta, Peter Berg, Martin Henderson, Davenia McFadden, Loretta Wyman, Nestor Carbonell, Joel Edgerton and a host of others who parade by or die so quickly that their character names are difficult to remember. The script has moments of crude comedy, a lot of toilet talk, and an ending that tries to make the entire ride meaningful. It is worth a watch for the pyrotechnics of camera and sound work (and if the viewer has a high tolerance for violence), but renting it first to test your taste is advisable. Grady HarpWas this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.