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Air Force One (1997)
Liberal Hollywood Strikes Again
I turned this movie off after the first five minutes. I can't stand the liberal elites in Hollywood who blast viewers with their political talking points within the first few minutes of what is suppose to be a thrilling action film. To further describe my outrage, the filmmakers have Harrison Ford's president character denounce the US for its failure to intervene in countries undergoing humanitarian crises. It's as if the benevolent elites in Hollywood want Americans who don't want to police the world and solve every single domestic problem facing less fortunate and successful countries to feel guilty about wanting the US to mind its own business and demand that American political authorities work for the interest of those who pay the damn bills in the first place.
The filmmakers could've at least waited until the end of the film to sermonize viewers with their liberal propaganda.
Man on Fire (2004)
Man on Fire ***1.2
"Man on Fire" is an emotionally riveting action-thriller and crime saga complete with solid acting, captivating visuals, a strong script and excellent direction. Denzel Washington delivers a powerful performance as burned-out CIA agent John Creasy who takes a job in the as a bodyguard for Lupita Ramos, daughter of Samuel and Lisa Ramos in a turbulent and violent period in Mexico's history. Kidnapping's occur daily. Families live in constant fear. The police are corrupt and inept as stopping the violence. All these factors contribute to the film's excellent build up to the movie's finale where Creasy embodies the films title.
In the interest of keeping this review short: I love this movie. I loved the performances (Dakoda Fanning is going to be one of this generation's break out stars and delivered a perfect performance). I loved the realism of the film in exposing the corruption of the Mexican government. The story captivated my senses and threw me into a fantasy world that realistically could never exist (the revenge plot). The film is a tragedy in a way because I have visited Mexico a number of times and love the food, people, and culture. It's sad to see what it has become today.
The twists and turns of the movie take some thinking, but ultimately the viewer is able to put the pieces together and figure out what really went down.
Excellent performances by Walken, Mitchel, and Anthony!
On a side note, I agree with another reviewer that audiences go to movies nowadays with too high of expectations. Its entertainment folks! Want to your life changed? Visit your local church. Until then, sit back, relax, open a cold one and enjoy the ride!
To address some of the criticisms:
1. Annoying editing
There seems to be a sizable number of people annoyed with the films "Meth Head" editing style. This decision on the part of director Tony Scott was implemented to give the viewer an insight into the mind of the film's protagonist (Creasy). We see and feel the anguish and torment of Creasy. It is far from distracting (want a real headache? Watch Cloverfield or REC then get back to me on this film). It works. With the use of subtitles, I actually learned a few Spanish phrases as well.
This movie is called "Man on Fire" for a reason folks. It's a revenge story. What are you expecting? I for one fully supported Creasy's methods in the film (too bad it cannot work realistically). This is exactly how you deal with the scum of the earth. If you really want to see violence and torture, Google search photos of what the drug cartels do their opponents today in the real world (one photo had mutilated body parts littered across a city's sidewalk and one person's face completely removed from his skull). Batman should take notice: you don't negotiate or reason with terrorists you kill them! Ray said it best: "He'll deliver more justice in a weekend than all your courts and tribunals combined, just stay out of his way." If your not one for violence, stay clear of this film.