RED – an interesting find

Posted: October 23, 2010 in Movie review

The premise of the movie as per their official website is that Frank (Bruce Willis), Joe (Morgan Freeman), Marvin (John Malkovich) and Victoria (Helen Mirren) used to be the CIA’s top  agents – but the secrets they know just made them the Agency’s top targets. Now framed for assasination, they must use all of their collective cunning, experience and teamwork to stay one step ahead of their deadly pursuers and stay alive. To stop the operation, the team embarks on an impossible, cross-country mission to break into the top-secret CIA headquarters, where they will uncover one of the biggest conspiracies and cover ups in government history.

Based on the cult D.C. Comics graphic novels by Warren Ellis and Cully Hammer, RED is an explosive action-comedy which also starred Brian Cox as Ivan Simanov, Mary-Louise Parker  as Sarah Ross and Karl Urban as William Cooper.

The former CIA bit threw me off, I thought they were like trying to bring back the glory days thus they reformed their team only to find that this movie actually has a great storyline. It started with Francis trying to blend in with his environment and sharing some syrupy romantic overtones with Sarah. As an excuse to call her, he kept tearing his pension check upon receipt and says to her his check did not come in the mail again. The camera then pans on the avocado he was trying to grow to the romance novels he reads because she reads them. Instead of being a sickly boy likes girl theme, Francis got a visit from his former CIA employee and the action began. Their first date when he came over her place ended with him kidnapping her. I mean who would want to go out with a semi-stalker who not only comes in her apartment but packs her bag as well? But later on she realized it was not the worst date she ever had and it became more and more like the romance novel she was currently reading. If we would base it from Victoria’s description of Frank, he is tough in the outside but very gooey in the inside.

When Cooper was first introduced here, he was setting up a suicide scene and he was totally cold and calculating. No spot was missed out and he did not even stop to blink as he talks on the phone and kicks the chair out of the guy’s feet to let him hang. But he was the epitome of a sensitive and loving family man at the middle part of the film which made his 180 degree turn in the end rather anti-climatic since it was already expected he’d turn. Opps I am getting too much ahead of the story. Going back their first shoot out had Frank winning first point. Bruce despite the age showed the agility of a younger man, as the patrol car swerved behind him, he stepped out of the driver’s side and started pumping bullets at Cooper’s car. It was so fluid and so utterly believable that I can only gasp in amusement. So drool worthy a stunt. The succeeding scenes had Marvin firing a bullet and hitting the bazooka’s missile dead center when the CIA lady called him old man. When the smoke dissipated, Marvin was left standing saying who is old now? Classic. Even when he said can we have pancakes? at the end of the movie after they rescued Sarah was one for the books. Another drool plus one loud guffaw.

But guys, if you think that Frank and Sarah’s was a match made in violence and death, you should bow down to the rather tough love between Victoria and Ivan. She shot him in the chest three times and he knew then she loves him. Ahh such passion and heat with all these gun play and bone crunching fight peppered with sarcastic humor made this movie one hell of a wonderful trip. Such wonderful actors they all were, definitely no small roles here as everyone had his/her moment to shine.

I should do more of this experiments and watch more movies just for the heck of it alone. 🙂


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