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|Index||38 reviews in total|
I generally agree with other reviews of this film in terms of weak
writing and lugubrious direction. I am rating it higher primarily
because it actually has real actors in the cast, hence you can watch it
without having a gag-reflex. Also, the cinematography was better than
average in this genre.
While there was nothing original in the plot structure, the moral ambiguity expressed through several key characters was somewhat refreshing...though, not fully resolved.
Sadly, the fine actor, Andy Garcia, is not properly exploited in this film. He comes across less than fully dimensional. The director went to a gold mine and barely got silver.
In the end, not a waste of the viewer's time, but more an appetizer than an entrée.
This is the first I've seen of movies on the particular subject of what
major international corporations such as Bectel are doing to
underdeveloped countries as regards their water. Well done treatment,
great cast, excellent acting. No hamming or sensationalism, no
gratuitous violence (not that there isn't enough to tell the story).
Perhaps other reviewers don't consider water as exciting as blood
diamonds or oil or uranium. Perhaps it's not. But it's certainly more
important. This fictional presentation of the issue is a good start
toward expanding popular awareness of one of the biggest problems
facing us in this new century.
Not water shortages, critical though they are. Rather, soulless, nationless corporate greed. Seven out of ten.
This is one of those films that was obviously a labor of love for many
of the folks involved. There are some incredible performances, and a
great and believable story here. It's the kind of story that deserves
to be a cherished bedtime story of the modern age - one of knights in
tarnished armor who do what is within their power to resist the
relentless pull of greed, selfishness, and fear - and surprisingly live
to tell the tale, on a broadcast network no less! One only prays the
hope conveyed here is realistic.
I am amazed that reviews of under 10 lines are not accepted. It seems that IMDb has decreed that brevity is not the soul of wit, and only when we drone on and on and on about our particular spin can we be deemed worthy of immortalization in their hallowed database. Thus having achieved immortality, I bid thee, "Adieu".
On the surface, this contemporary assault on corporate maleficence is
enough to make its point. But the subject matter is a complicated
affair that is lacking in this movie that feels rushed.
Messing about in third world countries and designing destinies built on precious resources and manipulating the environment is a heavy undertaking and the suffering of the population by these all too insensitive entities is a problem that is beginning to take shape and needs to be addressed.
It is attempted here as an action film with scruples and it does have its heart in the right place. But the very low budget and the glossy attempt to intertwine multi-national business interest and investigative journalism is a bit too much to maintain in this noble but shallow effort.
The name Actors are probably here for their moral support and do add a level of authenticity to the cause, but there just isn't enough depth pursued or motivations on either side to justify the broad concept that it is at hand here.
It plays like a short story or a magazine article. Enough to tantalize an interest in the matter but not enough to be at all convincing. It does open up the subject and allows some light if not insight into this very disturbing situation.
A Dark Truth (2012)
An ambitious movie, intending more than it achieves. At stake is a critique of the corporate cornering of water rights in the Third World. This is a real problem, and deserves better than this by Hollywood, if a big movie is the way to go about it. (A far better attempt, and a far better movie, is "También la lluvia", or "Even the Rain," set in Bolivia and starring Gael García Bernal.)
The really great actor here is Forest Whitaker, who has a fairly small role as a South American rebel leader with a true conscience. The lead actor is the ever-struggling (if sincere) Andy Garcia, who is a retired South American CIA man with a quasi-political radio talk show to keep him and his troubled wife and child alive and very well.
You can smell the connection that has to be made here, between Whitaker's jungle world of righteous rebellion and Garcia's safely withdrawn world of buried political misdeeds. The third world (narratively) is the big water purification company itself, with a slightly evil corporate head and his slow-to-wake sister who finally realizes the corporation their father started is corrupt and murderous. This third leg of the triangle is complex, and a bit unconvincing with its too-easy array of killers and corporate spies and Ecuadorian accomplices all a cell phone call away.
I might make clear here the movie is not a dud but it's very troubled, both formally (editing and writing issues, mostly) and in terms of its purported content. That is, ultra-violent scenes of mass murder are used over and over again to press home how ruthless and bloody the corporate heads are, safe in their glassed offices in Toronto. (Yes, the corporation is Canadian, which I guess is a nice novelty since Canadians are so famously nice.) The actual problem of water use and clean water supplies for the villages shown is never explored. Instead we have people running and getting gunned down with weirdly nonsensical abandon. A lot.
The more you dwell on this the more you realize the movie makers are as evil as the corporate bosses they are portraying. They use this horrifying cinematic mayhem to draw you in and make you (in theory) sympathize with the rebels, and with the ordinary people who just want to live and have clean water. Well, of course! So then we get back to Garcia drawn to the jungle to single-handedly (with a revolver) save these rebels from the advancing army troops. (Yes, Andy Garcia plays the Matt Damon character here, which is really quite funny at times, and not on purpose.)
So eventually you see through all the seriousness to a pretty poorly cobbled together movie with lots of overlapping plots and some very very fast solutions to messy problems (like getting the wanted rebel leader out of Ecuador on an airplane without a blink). I'd skip this mess for lots of reasons. And go see "Even the Rain" with its much gentler flaws.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
POSSIBLE SPOILER ALERT: Okay, so I just watched this movie. I was
pleasantly surprised. From the horrible reviews, I thought it would be
the worst movie I've ever seen. Actually, I didn't think it was that
bad. Was it the best movie I've ever seen? No, but it wasn't the worst,
Let's get the negative out of the way first. The family subplot for Begosian added nothing. I think it would have been better if they had spent the time exploring the relationship between Bruce and Morgan Swinton (Deborah Unger and Kim Coates). Were there plausibility issues. Sure, but isn't that a problem with all films. Another "dark truth" is that reality can be boring, especially with heavy topics like this. The acting was universally excellent.
Finally,(and this is the reason I give it a high score) I was CLUELESS about this topic before I saw this, and I'm convinced this is a large reason it was created, to publicize the issue. On this they were successful.
And oh yeah, I never saw the end coming.
The only problem I have is also warning to parents. This is very violent film. Much more violent than I thought it would be. .
This is one of the best corporate scandal movies ever made. This time
it involves a Canadian company rather than a standard typical
stereotype American one.
Worldwide travelers like me will appreciate the international realistic business environment exposure that includes Canada, South Africa and Ecuador. Plot twists and turns do not disappoint. Scenes look very realistic and portray how real life business and living conditions exist in these parts of the world.
The performances are outstanding. Andy Garcia gives perhaps his best acting performance yet in his career. Forest Whitaker is equally as impressive shining again as an actor playing another convincing international role character.
Please do yourself a favor and watch this movie. It entertains and delivers so it should not be missed.
The casting of the movie is incredible. Which is always the case when a
message is being delivered. It's not too much on the nose here or at
least it is incorporated into the story quite good. The actors you know
do what they can. Eva Longoria might have the least to do (especially
considering her name/weight). It's nice seeing some old familiar faces
in a movie, where they try to build character.
There is quite a bit of cliché in this, but you wouldn't/couldn't expect otherwise. Kevin Durand has a great little role in it and he makes his decision, no matter how small or big they are, actually work. Apart from that it's mostly the Andy Garcia show, with some added drama by Kara Unger and Forrest Whitacker. A nice little drama, with a lot of action in it.
I just saw this movie and thoroughly enjoyed it. And, yes. I agree with the lead review that it WAS formulaic. But i STILL found it enjoyable. If for no other reason than the political/industrial plot at the center of it all. I hope I NEVER lose interest in seeing a movie of this sort, a movie with 'a message'. It's more than funny that people would actually review this as they would a 'regular' movie. alTHOUGH, once again, I feel it worked on both levels. As a piece of entertainment and as an informative piece. I'm pretty sure the makers of the film did it that way to make the message more digestible/palatable. Especially considering that one of them is Garcia, born in Cuba. I gave it a 9(I would've usually given it an 8, relative to other movies. Still...i try to see anything with a 6.5 rating or above... just so you understand that this is still a high mark)to balance out all of the people who, for whatever reason/s, didn't seem to enjoy it as much as i did... btw people. if you have trouble accepting the premise of this movie then i advise you to read howard zinn's 'a people's history of the u.s.' good night and good luck.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
1 : Direction. Damien lee director of such classics as Ski School, Inner Action and who can forget the much loved .er ..Abraxas, Guardian of the Universe . So in such safe hands what can we expect from this movie?. The answer is uninspired direction, miscasting, and the feel of a TV show pilot that would never go to full series.
2: Plot. This plot concerns an evil water corporation whose goal is ultimately to privatise water trying to cover up mass murder in Ecuador after something goes wrong with water there making the locals ill. So instead of calling in the WHO, the local General kills everyone while Forest Whitaker escapes and former CIA agent turned radio host Andy Garcia has to rescue him and get him back to states to expose big bad corporation before they are assassinated by Kevin Durand. Why would a retired radio host want to rescue a guy in Ecuador you ask? Contrived script I answer. Turns out years earlier Garcia had Whitaker incarcerated. But don't worry, Whitaker doesn't mind because he wrote a book in prison and thanks Garcia for it.. Despite the fact its said Whitaker was in a really tough prison, why would Whitaker thank him for that? Perhaps he enjoyed the daily buggery?.
3: Eva Longoria. Why is she in this film? Shes in no way memorable, distracting if anything. When I saw her first I said "hey that's that chick from Desperate Housewives" Then she started firing a machine gun and I laughed out loud, hard to take Gabrielle Solis firing a machine gun seriously.
4: Kim Coates. Now I like this guy, I think he's a good actor but here he's so obvious and dull that I found his scenes painful and predictable.
5 : Too many chocolate cookies. Andy Garcia has clearly had too many, suck in that gut dude.
1: The shootout. Decent gun fight toward the end with Kevin Durand's turn coat sniping the attackers while Garcia scuttles about and tries to defend a wounded Whitaker.
2: Forest Whitaker. Even in bland movies like this Whitaker brings gravitas.
3: There's a road block scene where Garcia is trying to calmly negotiate his way through then takes out a gun and shoots down three army guys in rapid succession. Caught me by surprise by that I mean the loud gunfire woke me up. Overall : very bland and should be watched by those who are easily pleased by generic things like flavourless ice cream
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