Jim Davis is an ex-Army Ranger who finds himself slipping back into his old life of petty crime after a job offer from the LAPD evaporates. His best friend is pressured by his girlfriend Sylvia to find a job, but Jim is more interested in hanging out and making cash from small heists, while trying to get a law enforcement job so he can marry his Mexican girlfriend. Written by
Christian Bale spent three weeks with gang member, police officers, ex-soldiers and Homeland Security agents prior to the commencement of shooting. Bale originally wanted to do a full Ranger's School course, which takes eight weeks, and has a 70% drop out rate, but the shooting schedule wouldn't afford him enough time, so he was given a crash course over a week instead. See more »
When Jim learns he has been rejected from the LAPD, Mike suggests it's pretty obvious what has happened, at which point Jim raises his hands in confusion. The following shot shows Jim's hands firm on the wheel before raising them and shaking his head in the same manner. See more »
Training Day... but with a better script, better actors, and a better director
An intense film, that FEELS a lot like Training Day, but with more of a gritty approach, and with actors who seem actually believable... which makes sense since it's based on the real life experiences of the director/writer and people he knows.
Rodriguez (who was at the World Premiere) and Bale give stellar performances. Rodriguez, if this film is well distributed, will get huge exposure and will likely go far. His performance was incredible, believable, and emotional. Bale continues to show that he's one of the best in Hollywood. Sure, he's playing a slightly psychotic, mentally unstable fellow, similar to a number of previous roles he's played, but he does it so well.
Ayer has improved as a writer, and considering this is his feature film debut as a director, he did fantastically. His knowledge as a director shone through in the Q&A after the film. He also made sure to mention the Cannes labs, where he worked on the script for this film, and how it helped him improve as a writer.
Go see it. It's intense, well written, incredibly performed, and is a thinker of a film.
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