FantasticFest is the largest genre film festival in the U.S., specializing in horror, fantasy, sci-fi, and action movies from all around the world. Here's a list of some of our favorite movies at FantasticFest.
A grief-stricken mother takes on the LAPD to her own detriment when it stubbornly tries to pass off an obvious impostor as her missing child, while also refusing to give up hope that she will find him one day.
A marksman living in exile is coaxed back into action after learning of a plot to kill the President. Ultimately double-crossed and framed for the attempt, he goes on the run to find the real killer and the reason he was set up.
Evelyn Salt is a CIA agent and highly respected by all, including her boss, Ted Winter. Out of the blue, a Russian spy walks into their offices and offers a vital piece of information: the President of Russia will be assassinated during his forthcoming visit to New York City to attend the funeral of the recently deceased U.S. Vice President. The name of the assassin: Evelyn Salt. Concerned about the safety of her husband, who she cannot contact, she goes on the run. Winter refuses to accept that she is a mole or a double agent but her actions begin to raise doubts. Just who is Evelyn Salt and what is she planning? Written by
When Orlov sees Salt's CIA history on his hand held device, it foreshadows many of the skills she will need throughout the film. He reads:
Salt, Evelyn Russian External Operations CIA - Central Asia Division
Position: Covert Operations Division: Russia Security Clearance: Level 1
INTERNAL RECORD Current Cover: Vice President of Product & Development, Rink Petroleum Deniability: No agency cover. Capture in Foreign Territory (Hostile or Friendly) Carries Government/CIA Disavowal By United States
Special Skills: Close Quarter Combat; Applied Explosive Technique; Rapid Assault; Counter Surveillance; Driving Technique; Covert Communications; Military Free Fall Parachuting; Edged Weapons; Precise Application of Lethal Force; Unarmed Combat; Threat Elimination
Commendations: Received the Intelligence Medal for an Act or Achievement significantly Above Normal Duties, Resulting in an Important Contribution to the Mission of the Agency. Recipient of the Featherstone Grant for Outstanding Post Graduate Work in Russian History and Literature. Nationally rated chess player. Black belt in Taekwondo at age 16. Parents killed in car accident, December 24, 1988. After release from North Korea, married German National Michael Krause. Guardian died March 23, 2002.
The "Distinguished Intelligence Medal" as worded is real. There is no public record of a CIA-given "Featherstone Grant". See more »
When Evelyn is climbing on the outside of the building, in some shots her dog's head is visible sticking out of her backpack. In other shots the backpack is zipped up tight. See more »
[being dragged out and tied down]
Please let me go home. Please, I'm not who you think I am. I'm really not who you think I am. Please. Please, I'm not a spy.
You are a spy!
I'm not a spy. Please let me go home.
I am not a spy! I am a business woman. I work for Rink Petroleum and Gas. Please call them. I work for Rink Petroleum!
You are here to sabotage our nuclear ambitions. Yes?
[water tube being forced into her mouth]
I am not a spy! I am not a spy!
See more »
Jolie proves she can play rough in Kurt Wimmer's Salt
While I can't say that I was awaiting Angelina Jolie's latest outing with bated breath, I was intrigued by the fact that Salt was originally intended to be a Tom Cruise vehicle.
Tom's waning box office pulling-power aside, this sex-swap was a smart move by writer Kurt Wimmer (Equilibrium) as it gives Jolie the chance to prove that she can lay the smack-down on just as many henchmen as the boys can. Having her rather than him as the duplicitous CIA agent Evelyn Salt, Wimmer gives a fresh angle to a plot that could easily have been a boring instalment of the Bourne series. Salt also sees the welcome return of Russian villains to the cinema after a long period in which Middle Eastern terrorists were severely over-worked.
When a Soviet defector strolls into the CIA and announces that Salt is a sleeper agent who will kill the Russian president, she goes on the run. Fearing for the safety of her husband Michael, Salt sets out to find him before agents Winter (Liev Schreiber) and Peabody (Chiwetel Ejiofor) catch up with her. The question of where Salt's loyalties lie is the true source of tension and Jolie plays it cool, gaining and dismissing the audience's trust several times over.
Schreiber and Ejiofor draw the short straws in terms of dialogue and simply run after Jolie for the entire movie without doing anything of significance. Hopefully, if the proposed sequel goes ahead, Wimmer will be able to correct this glaring oversight.
The action scenes are sharply directed and Jolie finally gets her hands dirty, particularly in the opening exchanges where she's being tortured in a Korean prison. If that wasn't enough, she also flies down an elevator shaft by leaping from wall to wall it was a silly effect but added a cheesy, fanciful element to what would have been an entirely too serious movie.
Consequently the first 40 minutes are fast and furious as Salt evades her fellow agents by any means necessary but not to be outdone, the rest of the film takes a left turn and continues to surprise with some serious fisticuffs, gun-play and high-speed car chases. Admittedly, for all its skill and enthusiasm, Salt's finale is a little over-the-top and it wanders into well-worn ground without knowing when to stop. Aside from this minor gripe, Salt is a well-directed action movie that delivers us a potential new franchise, an intriguing lead character and an exciting close to a lacklustre summer.
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