Thank God for cable. I am really thankful that this little piece of equipment exists, because after seeing this movie, I would’ve been really pissed had I wasted seven bucks on this pathetic, pretentious, and totally fucking idiotic piece of shit. For me the following is clear: It looks like both Kevin Costner and Kurt Russell are way off from fucking redemption. Christian Slater’s slowly rebuilding career has been shot down to hell for good. And the Arquette’s? Well, David proves that he’s just another fucking idiot who only serves for background, and Courtney Cox (David’s wife) proves that she’s nothing but a plastic talent-less bitch and will make you wonder why is it that she's so popular in Friends. Add a lame plot, lousy directing, flashy camera angles and editing and you’ll start realizing why this fucking film sucked badly. This is one messed up movie from start to finish, and clearly deserves to be blasted for everything it fucks up on.The first signs of annoyance appear at the beginning of the movie with those pathetically stupid video game-like opening credits. Uh-oh, brain cramps are developing since this pretty much gives a hint as to what's in store. The film is about two fucks just fresh out of jail, Thomas Murphy (Kevin Costner) and Michael Zane (Kurt Russell). Both are supposed illegitimate descendants of Elvis Presley, and are planning a major casino heist with their buddies Hanson (Christian Slater), Gus (David Arquette), and Franklin (Bokeem Woodbine). To do so, they'll go in as Elvis impersonators for a Elvis Revival in the casino, or some shit like that. That happens, and a huge shootout occurs, and then, the first cliché of predictability occurs when Franklin is killed in the progress (hint: he's not white). Then the double cross occurs when Murphy shoots everyone else (that’s no spoiler, you know that’s going to happen at any moment). But luckily (!) Zane had his vest on, so he goes on to chase after him. In the meantime, enter a spoiled brat, Jesse (David Kaye), who breaks into the gang's safe house, steals the money and hides it in his mother's house. His mother turns out to be tramp and fucked up femme fatale Cybil (Courtney Cox-Arquette). Zane soon finds out where the stash is but then, forced by Cybil, they all go into a road trip to LA to launder the money, and get away from Murphy. And then the film goes like this: Murphy must find Zane, then Zane must find Murphy while the tramp and the brat weave their way through.
"Shit is King"
If there has ever been a more stupid movie, this is it. I mean the entire plot is so illogical and full of unbelievable coincidences, laughable clichés, and stupid plot holes. The characters are never likeable since Murphy is just a fucking psycho in a trip of bad acid, Zane is a pathetic moronic fuck, while Cybil and the kid are just the stuff of nightmares, and the film could care less about either one. The casino heist is shot in a flashy bullet-blazing, destruction-ridden way that it would bring blatant flames of annoyance from within you since the sequences sound and smell and feel like a blatant John Woo rip-off. Then when innocent by-standers are killed just for the hell of it, it just piles on the stupidity of the scene. Franklin, the black guy is a cliché, and you know he’s going to be the first one to get popped. And when the obvious double-crossing occurs afterwards, the film gets bashed into a road trip of idiotic proportions. Here are the "standouts:"
1. Zane threatening Cybil – It is neither suspenseful nor funny.
2. Murphy getting distracted and going off the road and into a ditch, knocking himself out – A perfect example on how this film is going to be.
3. Murphy blowing up a gas station – Was that necessary?
4. Cybil trying to act sexy – Belch, did she really have to?
5. Murphy being blown by a gal while driving – Those expecting titillation, sorry, it ain’t happening
6. And then later Murphy sending her gal away – Ok, so who the hell was that, and why did he take her anyways?
7. Murphy facing off with a Police officer western style – What the fuck was that all about?
8. Cybil cheating Zane out – You’ll laugh at this one, even more when she returns.
9. Murphy killing people who have nothing to do with the film – (groaning) Why?
11. Zane being ridiculously arrested for stealing a car – Laugh out loud.
Jesse and his “partner” contract – Funny (as in ridiculous) and pathetic.
There are also the unbelievable coincidences of Murphy and Zane sharing the jail, and Murphy spotting both Cybil and Jesse in another car while going in opposite directions on the road in what has to be the lamest coincidence ever. Gosh, what the hell was that? I mean, couldn’t the filmmakers find a way to add some intelligence to the film, for fucks sake? Then the flashy editing was also getting into my nerves, with director Demian Liechtenstein trying to show us his “music video” abilities. Slow forward, fast forward, slow forward, fast forward, cross image, return, cross fast forward image return. Print, and annoy.
His screenplay is awful as fuck as well. The Elvis illegitimate children subplot is left to dry, and we never see the real connection between the story itself and Elvis. And this is only part of the film's pretentiousness as it tries to be action, it tries to be comedy, it tries to be smart, it tries a lot of things and it falls flat on its face in every single one. Damn it Demian, if you really want to show some style or if you want to prove that you’re an ARTISTE, well fuck, start by writing an intelligent script instead of attempting a lame-ass style-over-substance approach.
Ok, I have to admit that some of the action was fun. Especially when Ice-T comes flying with his machine guns killing everyone nearby. But that’s as far as it’ll get.
The acting is sub-par here. Bokeeem Woodbine as the black member of the gang is wasted here, totally. And why the hell was David Arquette cast as a baddie? Probably just to watch her girl grab Russell’s dick so he can yell out “You never do that to me, you bitch, but I still love you.” Gee, talk about miscasting in the worst sense of the word. Christian Slater is a piece of cardboard here, and you can see he has no interest in the movie. Well, he needs the money so who can blame him? His career is already in the gutter. David Kaye is a spoiled brat, no wonder he fits his role perfectly, but still, his character has no point in being there in the first place. Courtney Cox though, shows here that she’s one of the most one-sided, and most monotonous actresses out there. She’s a beautiful actress and a hot one, and I wonder aloud why is it that she's trying so hard to act sexy instead of being her own self? It's just pathetic. Then when she tries to act in the dramatic moments, she comes off either laughable or irritating. Just watch the scene where she tries to "cry her eyes out" in front of Kurt Russell's Zane. It's a cringe-inducing performance, so bad that it would've even made her hubby David go out of the theater and ask for his money back. Hell, I know that I would. Kurt Russell is lost here, and at the same time, it seems that he's the only one here having fun with the role. Well, he did Elvis a while ago didn’t he? But Kevin Costner? Gees-us, WHAT THE FUCK IS THE MATTER WITH YOU, BITCH? Gosh, 9 bombs (This fucker, Wyatt Earp, The War, The Bodyguard, Robin Hood, The Postman, Waterworld, For Love Of The Game and Message In A Bottle) in 10 years, 4 of them in a row. Has your brain gone soft or something for you to choose all these shitty roles? And then when you do a good movie (Tin Cup, 13 Days) you again splatter yourself back into another horrible movie. Why? Here’s my advice for you: TAKE A FUCKING BREAK FROM FILMING. Your sense of creativity is already tiresome as hell. Do what your buddy Lawrence Kasdan did, take a five-year break, and when you feel renewed, then bring it on again. LISTEN TO ME! DO WHAT I SAY YOU FUCK! We can’t afford to waste any more money just to watch you lose more intelligence with bad film after bad film.In the end, don’t waste your time in this movie. You want a casino heist film, go rent Ocean’s 11. If you want a satire, rent Dr Strangelove, you want action, rent Face/Off, but don’t rent this. (0.5–5)
link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=4923&reviewer=235
originally posted: 03/08/02 15:08:01