Friday, September 14, 2007

Shoot 'Em Up

While I was preparing my Information Blast this afternoon, I came across an article at The Huffington Post about a movie called Shoot 'Em Up. The title said that it was the best dumb action movie ever. Seeing as I've been trying to watch a pointless action movie for a while, my interest was piqued. I hadn't seen a good pointless action movie since I watched Passenger 57 the other weekend.

Shoot 'Em Up puts Passenger 57 to shame. Firstly, Shoot essentially eschews the traditional plot. Oh, there's a plot. It involves a mystery man, a baby, and a lactating hooker. No, seriously, a lactating hooker. Honestly, if this movie took itself seriously, I have no idea when. The plot was ridiculous, the action scenes were crazy (awesome), and the political commentary on--wait for it--gun control was completely misplaced. All of the things that would normally dissuade other viewers, including levels of violence even Tarentino hasn't reached (and, if you have seen Kill Bill, you know that Tarentino loves the ultraviolence), but not me. It made it endearing to me, especially because the movie took such a tongue-in-cheek tone to its own innate absurdity.

Each character was a trope of the action stereotype. Clive Owen played the enigmatic loner hero; Paul Giamatti, the wickedly evil villain; and Monica Bellucci, the ridiculous hot woman whose hard-boiled exterior covers a heart of gold. Honestly, this movie wouldn't have worked as well in the hands of less-talented actors. Owen's character wouldn't have been as interesting if it weren't delivered in a complete deadpan, something Owen does well. Giamatti's cool, calculating nature helps him in exerting his evilness in the movie. Also, I loved Bellucci's half-grasp of English; it worked really well for her.

All in all, Shoot 'Em Up was hyper-violent, campy, and super stylized. And, I loved every second of it. Here's the gauge that I will give you to whether or not you should see this movie. Did you see Kill Bill? If no because it's violent, stay away. If you saw it and were grossed out, stay away as well. Anyone else, please see this movie as it was really fun and (un)intentionally hilarious. The rant about ponytails and the skydiving gun fight really made the 87 minutes (also, that kept it interesting: it was too short to lose interest) worthwhile. Do It!