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Knight and Day" is a comfort food movie. It's a pleasant diversion, a
fun time at the cinema that doesn't ask a lot of of it's audience and
offers an enjoyable ride. We've seen it all before, but it worked
pretty well then, and it works pretty well now.
June Havens (Cameron Diaz) is an average perky blonde romantic comedy heroine who runs into the charming and mysterious Roy Miller (Tom Cruise) at the airport, and is sucked into a series of misadventures when Roy turns out to be a secret agent fighting rogue elements in his own agency . . . or maybe HE's the rogue agent . . . It depends on who she listens to. there's a mysterious device called the Zephyr that Roy is either protecting or trying to steal. All of this is fairly predictable, and, again, nothing new. But director James Mangold ("Copland", "Walk the Line", "3:10 to Yuma") always knows how to make a film play, and his skills haven't deserted him here. His pacing is brisk and fun, and he stages some terrific action (including one sequence from Diaz' point of view that did feel genuinely new).
Of course, this is a star vehicle, and whether you enjoy it will depend a lot on how you feel about Tom Cruise. Dismissing his personal life as utterly irrelevant, I find him to be a solid and dependable actor who does action better than almost anyone in Hollywood. And, here, he gets a rare chance to flex his comic muscles, and hie's quite funny (though too much of the best material is in the trailer). Diaz is pleasant, but tries a little too hard to be cute. And, occasionally, the film itself has the same problem.
But, overall, it's a funny little spy movie. part adventure, part romcom. Not destined for any Ten Best Lists, but enjoyable summer entertainment.
Critics feared the worst when word surfaced that re-shoots, re-writes and re-edits for this much-delayed, much-troubled film were still going on as late as May 2010 - barely seven weeks prior to its scheduled release. Pre-screenings were limited, and thumbs were primed to point down. But guess what? The finished product is surprisingly enjoyable - particularly the rollicking first hour. Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz are obviously having a blast, and anytime they are on screen, the movie's energy and fun level pegs the meter. The break-neck pace can keep the audience guessing about where Cruise's character is dragging Diaz's reluctant heroine off to next. Kudos to the leads for not carrying the movie with their effervescent acting, but also for doing many of their own stunts.
We saw the Saturday sneak preview for Knight and Day, cautiously
optimistic for a film that has had almost no reviews despite the fact
it releases on Wednesday. To avoid spoilers, I'll make this simple:
The Good * Tom Cruise turns in a star performance, and Diaz holds her own. * Story has several twists and turns * Walks a fine line between comedy and action well (for the most part) * I never looked at my watch once and the film running time flew by
The Not So Good * CGI is weak and there is a lot of it * Can get a little campy from time to time * Predictable
Overall this was quite entertaining. If your expecting an Oscar caliber film you will be disappointed. If your looking for some above average summer fun buy your ticket without hesitation!
Jump-starting the Mysterious Plot Summer Season (Knight and Day, Salt,
Inception, Piranha 3-D), Knight and Day is quite an interesting thrill
ride that's very fresh in the midst of a summer season with very little
originality. With the two leads delivering charismatic, fun, and great
performances, this movie is propelled by star power, intrigue, and
never allowing the audience to be one step ahead of the flick. The
twists and turns may have been a little unnerving, and the movie does
suffer from being quite vague at times, the overall package is a fun
one. Unlike most summer clunkers (there was some robot movie last year
that was dismally pathetic, if only I remember the name) this one is
forgivable for its flaws because of its style, loose direction, and
Without revealing too much (trust me, predicting the movie from the trailer will do you no good), Knight and Day follows a secret agent (Tom Cruise) that accidentally involves a bystander (Cameron Diaz) in the middle of a crazy fight spanning multiple agencies and multiple countries. Written by Patrick O'Neal, this script is very unique, very refreshing, and at times quite off-the-wall. The story moves very fast, but has time for some character development and character revelationseven if they become little blurbs here and there. The only issue is that characters are revealed in such quick and awkward manners, but it might be more an editing issue rather than a writing issue.
Cameron Diaz and Tom Cruise were perfect for their leading roles here. Cameron Diaz has an undeniable charm that has made her not only a major box office draw over the years, but one of the few actresses that can carry any movie past mediocrity. At the same time, Tom Cruise also has the ability to propel movies with his impeccable charm and subtle timing. So, naturally, with these two together, movie magic is accomplished. Just like in Vanilla Sky (even if the editing and obscurity allowed the movie to collapse), Knight and Day is jump-started and propelled by Diaz and Cruise acting together. Their comic timing is great, and can still deliver the emotions when you need them to. Everyone else did a respectable job, but they consisted of dozens of small roles.
The movie however suffers from one major flaw: potential. This movie could have been something very special if it had been given a little more love, a bit more budget, and better editing. James Mangold is heavily varied in his directing resume (Cop Land, Walk the Line, Identity, 3:10 to Yuma) so he has the ability to run an action film (unlike the indie-director of the last James Bond flick). But, the movie does this mildly irritating thing in which it sets up potential action sequences, but skips them entirely. While the movie does offer plenty of action, this irritating directing/editing blunder was done at least three times. The fact that it could have done so much more doesn't distract from the overall quality, but does unveil its potential. With a budget of over $120 million, Knight and Day looks like an action movie that was running out of cash.
The action that we do get to see is plentiful, and fun. Plausibility and realism takes a timeout as we get insane chases, dozens of explosions, and plenty of fights. There is very little slowdown, very little time for the audience to breathe. The CGI is sometimes a bit much, but doesn't distract too much from the movie. Adding to the mayhem is the dozens of plot twists and turns, which range from small, to changing the flick entirely. Unfortunately, it seems like it was edited by someone with a samurai sword and too much sugar in his blood.
Bottom Line: While it could have been so much more, and could have really been something truly special, Knight and Day is still an admirable movie thanks to its leads---even if age is starting to catch up to them. With a crazy script edited in a crazy manner, this movie is far from your average summer movie, and is a mildly refreshing visual trip around the world. No sequel or remake connections here, as the plot is unique, even if the action is your usual CGI-heavy fare. The directing, editing, and content choices however keep it from truly hitting the big leagues. But if you want something different and sequel-free to watch this summer (without screaming for mercy as the movie continues), then Knight and Day is your flick. Unique concept, unique movie, unique flaws.
I saw "Knight and Day" tonight at an advanced screening. I really liked it. For me, I considered it more of a comedy, rather than a thriller. Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz have great chemistry, and did wonderful line deliveries of several running jokes. Their facial expressions, non-verbal actions, and then their unique line delivery - just made everything fit together into a delightful comedy. You will enjoy yourself and laugh out loud. Tom Cruise does a great job of reminding us why we like him as a performer and actor. (Recently, I think too many of us have been side-tracked by his off-camera non-PC comments and antics; so it's good to get back to the basics, that he really is a wonderful actor.) Cameron Diaz is funny, warm,beautiful, and spunky. I loved the way these two actors interacted with each other. Well done. I know another reviewer here kept dropping "Oscar award winning" several times - but for myself, I would not go that far. I don't think this has the emotional depth that you'd think of for an Oscar; but nevertheless, I think this is a delightful funny movie that will make you laugh and enjoy an evening out. I recommend this movie. You will feel good.
*** out of (****)
I just came back from an advanced screening of "Knight and Day" and I have to say, I was extremely impressed. I, as well as you, are tired of formulaic Hollywood movies that are disposable and provide little to no new elements to the table. This is the exact opposite of what the final product is of this film. "Knight and Day" brings many twists and turns, it is far from by-the-numbers, and is easily unforgettable. For starters, the action is quite remarkable and pretty darn satisfying. And the movie was just hilarious and had great comic timing. It should mean something when I tell you that the crowded audience was laughing. Not just a few people, the WHOLE audience and they took up almost all the seats. "Killers", a movie that fits under the action/comedy genre was one that I was looking forward to, but was a huge letdown. "Knight and Day" definitely doesn't disappoint and brings the laughs, with the big action. This movie is probably the most fun I've had in a while, and this is coming from a very harsh grader and someone that is let down very easily due to high expectations.
"Knight and Day" revolves around Cameron Diaz, who is boarding a plane to see her sister April get married. At first, she is forbidden to board the plane, but then the flight attendant finds a seat for her. And guess who Diaz sits next to? The inevitable Tom Cruise. After having a little "talk" with the pilot, the passengers, and the flight attendant, him and Diaz seek out to hunt down the antagonists, one which is played by Peter Sarsgaard. Although, Cruise warns Diaz that the bad guys will say that they are the "FBI" and will pretend she's in a safe place. However, through further investigation, Diaz may think that Cruise is unto something. In the meantime, the bad guys are looking for the battery and are not too thrilled about who holds its possession.
First, let's get to the positives. First off, I liked that this movie established character development. Most action/comedy films fail to fully flesh out are leads and then we aren't registered with them. 3:10 to Yuma director makes us care about these characters, and when put in a tough situation, we just hope the best. Second of all, I thought the script was great. I thought this movie had some really funny one-liners and the film had great comic timing. It couldn't have been better. Thirdly, I thought that the performances were great. All the characters did their job and even stood out, especially Cameron Diaz and Tom Cruise. Diaz and Cruise also had wonderful chemistry and their relationship never felt forced or phony. It came out as very authentic rather than artificial and syrupy. Moreover, I thought the film's pacing was excellent. The film is shy of two hours, yet feels like half of that. After the film was over, I thought there would be at least another hour added. Furthermore, I thought the action was awesome. It definitely delivered and this is the best action I've seen in a long time. And lastly, the cinematography was just amazing. I loved the scenery and great production values I must add.
There are very minimal flaws with this movie. However, there are some. First of all, I know this film is intentionally nonsensical, but some scenes went so over-the-top, that when it occasionally was meant to be serious, it came off as cheesy or laugh worthy, fortunately, like I said, occasionally. Second of all, I enjoyed this movie so much that I just wish it were longer.
Overall, "Knight and Day" is a great film because of its fresh script, great performances, amazing action, great comic timing, breathtaking cinematography, and a fascinating direction. And for the first time, it's actually not mindless! If you keep your brain on, you'll still thoroughly enjoy it. If you were disappointed by "Killers", don't worry, so was I, because you will still like this movie. Shoot, I enjoyed it so much I think it's even better than "Mr. & Mrs. Smith" which I liked. "Knight and Day" is one of those rare movies that just works on every level and is one of those rare movies that is worth full admission. See it at night with a large crowd, with a big bucket of popcorn, and a drink, and you'll have a blast. I enjoyed the movie so much that I wanted it to last from "Knight" to "Day". It comes highly recommended.
Well I had hopes for this film from the previews I'd seen. It lived up to what I had anticipated. Very humorous banter, action flowed well, never a dull moment and the acting and chemistry worked for my wife and I. I'm not sure why there is any comparison to Mr. and Mrs. Smith as I couldn't see any communality other than there being a woman and man in the title character. Anyway, if you're looking for an entertaining movie that moves well and is pretty funny then you'll like this film. Not going to make it for an Emmy but certainly delivers on what it was expected to deliver. Didn't mention this but for some reason they had one showing at our Cinemark and so bought some tickets in the morning. Definitely worth the ticket price.
Finally a great action flick with the perfect combination of action, humor, story, and romance. The cast was fantastic and so was the overall feel of the film. I also really enjoyed how every detail wasn't just bluntly explained....i have a brain, thanks for realizing. Everyone in the theater seemed to love it, lot's of laughs...seriously, i haven't laughed that much at the movies in a while. And it also kept my complete attention throughout the entire film...and with some serious ADD that says a lot. So.. if i can close with anything..it's to just go see this movie. Don't over expect anything because this is my opinion, but definitely see it. I personally think you won't be disappointed.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
People will cast around for comparisons to explain what 'Knight and
Day' copies most. Is it Brad and Angelina in Mr. and Mrs. Smith? Not
really, but certainly dozens of sources have been gleefully plundered.
A close comparison is early 'Bourne,' with Diaz's Franka Potente to
Cruise's Matt Damon, but with the humor, braggadocio, and indifference
to logic of the original James Bond stories.
This couple in adversity, like the 'Bourne' one, is a linkage that comes about seemingly by accident when Joan Havens (Diaz) happens to wind up on a nearly empty plane to Kansas City that Roy Miller (Cruise) hijacks, after its crew tries to kill him. Miller is a CIA man, or a former one. He's gone rogue, or so some say. He's also in possession of some kind of inexhaustible energy source MacGuffin thingie created by a brilliant teenager nerd pal of his called Simon Feck (Paul Dano). Naturally everybody wants to get hold of this thingie, and later of young Simon. Sarsgaard is a CIA agent called Fitzgerald who's chasing Roy, and his boss is a black lady called Isabel (Viola Davis). Joan, who rebuilds classic American cars, is on her way to her sister's wedding. The greatest tribute to Roy's skill and a sign of his attention to the human side of things is that he gets her to the wedding, after a few car explosions and chases and dozens of dead bodies. Roy has two main ways of relating to people. He kisses them or he kills them. There isn't time for much else. Cruise carries this off with panache. Diaz is equal to the demands of her role: ditsy -- but glamorous and sexy -- blonde who's also a Charlie's Angel.
When the stuff happens on the plane at the beginning, it's not remotely believable. It isn't meant to be. How believable is any blockbuster action? How believable is anything anywhere? 'Knight and Day' establishes right away (watch how the plane rocks when there's turbulence) that this is a garish, over-the-top comedy. The ridiculous opening sequence clearly establishes that this is an outrageous comedy -- and a romance -- as much as it's an actioner. The filmmakers are simply betting that the vivacity of the action and the charm of the stars will get you involved and that involvement will grow rather than diminish as the story progresses. The action is preposterous, but the protagonists are in trouble, so you forget it's silly and start to worry -- but you don't forget to laugh, and you're meant to. The movie manages to ramp up all three aspects and keep the cocktail stirred. This is a shameless effort to appeal simultaneously to three different genre demographics: Comedy, Action, Romance. And it just may succeed.
Is this Ron Miller (Tom Cruise) a man on a crucial mission -- or an out-of-control nut case? This is the question this movie poses, and this is a role that both Cruise's friends and his enemies may find appropriate. . . But to stick with this movie and enjoy its wild action-romance-comedy ride, you need to set aside any feelings the actor's couch-jumping antics may have awakened and focus on the great movies he has been in, observe how well he and ace comedienne Cameron Diaz work together, and there's entertainment to be had here.
'Knight and Day' is completely empty and pointless, but also quite a lot of fun. It's too long (like so many of the new pictures), and contains such a rich, indigestible mélange of action stuff -- somersaulting cars exploding on highways, shootouts, chases, fires -- and such lush locations, including Pamplona at bull run time, picturesque Austrian towns, Langley, and the Orient Express, you feel overfed. But then you walk out and it's all, pleasantly, forgotten, except for Tom Cruise's manic smile and Cameron Diaz's look of wide-eyed astonishment, which are enough to take home from a summer blockbuster in a season when one of the NY Times' lead critics praises Jonah Hex and Pixar's strung-out third installment of Toy Story is hailed as a masterpiece.
Empty of solid content though it may be, 'Knight and Day' succeeds, for one thing, because it does something woefully lacking in today's blockbusters -- alternates the heavy action with quiet times. Here, they're usually romantic pauses, in which the lady (Diaz) changes into something more comfortable. Joe Carnahan, who has a sense of humor and knows his way around tough-guy scenes, should have kept this in mind when he made 'The A-Team,' a movie that never lets up and consequently leaves you just feeling weary. You remember nothing but Liam Neeson puffing on cigars in a movie he should never have been in. 'Knight and Day' has sense enough to give its leads appropriate roles and let you catch your breath every now and then.
In development, this movie went through various titles; the one it landed with, 'Knight and Day,' only makes sense at the end and even then won't hit you over the head with its logic. 'K & D' also went through many writers -- at least nine. Considering that, it's a tribute to director and cast that the whole thing hangs together as well as it does and the different sequences don't just feel like pieces in a disassembled puzzle.
Tom Cruise's character is invincible and his accidental partner, Joan, tends to get overexcited or lose her ability to cope with the gangs of assassins, the 90-mile-an-hour car chases, and the explosions and Roy resorts to drugging her so he can whisk them both safely away. From being scared and dubious, Joan begins to have more and more confidence in Roy and as this turns to attraction she shows startling abilities of her own: "you've got skills," Roy tells her. Indeed. And however preposterous, so does 'Knight and Day.'
Greetings again from the darkness. I really liked director James
Mangold's two most recent films - Walk the Line, and 3:10 to Yuma. Tom
Cruise and Cameron Diaz both have great smiles and look really good in
swim attire. Paul Dano (There Will Be Blood, Little Miss Sunshine) is
well cast as an off-center nerdy scientist. That's the end of all the
positive comments I have for this film.
The negative comments are for just about everything else in this summer "blockbuster". It is billed as an Action-Comedy. There is plenty of action, though much of it is so far-fetched and ridiculous. There is almost no comedy. The rapid fire banter between Cruise and Diaz would have been much more effective had it been well written.
A quality action movie needs a real force coming from the bad guy. Here, the filmmakers instead provide us with a "is he a good guy or a bad guy" story line with Cruise. Anyone surprised at the real answer? Because of that, we don't have anyone to root against. Some generic Spainish arms dealer played by Jordi Molla (Blow) and the government agent played generically by Peter Saarsgard. Generic is not a word you want associated with your movie.
This is Cruise and Diaz together for the first time since the far-superior Vanilla Sky. They both deserve better than this slop, though I feel confident they had a good time with the globe-trotting to Spain, Austria, Jamaica and a few U.S. stops in between. The fun they had filming did not translate into fun for me as a viewer. In fact, as they were driving away, I kept hoping for an ending like Thelma and Louise.
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