Shade is set in the world of poker hustlers working the clubs and martini bars of Los Angeles. The tale unfolds as a group of hustlers encounter "The Dean" and pull off a successful sting ... See full summary »
Carl Mazzocone Sr.,
Talented rookie race-car driver Jimmy Bly has started losing his focus and begins to slip in the race rankings. It's no wonder, with the immense pressure being shoveled on him by his overly ambitious promoter brother as well as Bly's romance with his arch rival's girlfriend Sophia. With much riding on Bly, car owner Carl Henry brings former racing star Joe Tanto on board to help Bly. To drive Bly back to the top of the rankings, Tanto must first deal with the emotional scars left over from a tragic racing accident which nearly took his life.Written by
Joe and Jimmy could not have taken the race cars from the party as easily as they did. CART cars do not have onboard starters, so they can't be started simply from the cockpit. You would need a crew member with a starter motor at the back of the car to fire the engine.
Most "racing cars" at shows and parties like this are usually dummy display models, without "real" engines or other heavy, and expensive, mechanical components. Moreover, if the cars actually had been authentic (and somehow could have been started), they likely would have had virtually no fuel aboard; most city fire departments have strict regulations on this for a show or display car, especially inside a hotel. See more »
In the original version of the film when Memo Heguy's (de la Fuente) car wrecks and is thrown upside down in the river, Joe Tanto (Stallone) jumped into the river with Jimmy Bly (Pardue) to save him. Beau Brandenburg (Schweiger) was not involved in this scene at all originally. But director Renny Harlin thought that it made the Beau Brandenburg character look totally heartless. So Stallone rewrote the scene taking his character Joe Tanto out of it completely. He instead put his character in the pits the entire time. The scene was partly reshot in a similar location in California, instead of returning to Germany where the original scene was filmed. Stallone wrote that the Brandenburg character turns his car around and helps save Memo from drowning. Parts of the original scene featuring Joe Tanto, were for the most part not reshot. Digital Effects company Pixel Magic digitally erased Tanto out of the scene. Aside from this scene, other scenes involving Beau Brandenburg were rewritten during filming to make his character more likable and misunderstood. Some of these scenes include the ending of the film and a scene where Brandenburg denies a female fan a kiss. See more »
I am very surprised by how poorly this film has been received by the movie-going public. Both professional film critics from around the country as well as people from the general public are often tearing this film apart on every level - characters are underdeveloped, the editing is too choppy, the story is too simple, etc. I think that people are being overly harsh, by a lot.
DRIVEN is a fun, highly entertaining film that I would recommend to most people. I must admit, however, that I have a soft spot for both Renny Harlin and Sly Stallone. Regarding Renny, I am a fan of Die Hard 2, Cliffhanger, and Deep Blue Sea (though I was not as impressed with Cutthroat Island and The Long Kiss Goodnight). I really like his style of film-making and the way he shoots his action sequences. I realize that his films are not worthy of Academy Awards, but they do succeed in what they set out to do. Regarding Sly, I grew up on the Rocky and Rambo films and have been a fan of his for many years. I see all of his movies in the theater, and I've recently been disappointed by some of his choices. Get Carter was fine, but not as good as I had hoped it would be. Thus, when DRIVEN was released I had high hopes for it and really wanted it to be good. As it turns out, I was quite pleased.
Rather than discuss the plot of the film, which can be found in many reviews all over the Web, I thought I should mention The DRIVEN DVD that I just purchased. The DVD is full of extras, all of which are very interesting. Renny's running commentary is engaging, and the behind the scenes featurettes are also quite informative. What is most interesting is the 50 minutes of deleted scenes that are accompanied by a Stallone commentary. Here we get to watch scenes that were cut from the film and hear from Stallone what the original intent of the scenes were. It turns out that the original cut of the film was 4 and a half hours long. Clearly, Sly wrote a script that was filled with character development, but most of those scenes were cut in order to speed up the pacing of the film. This is too bad, because I feel that the inclusion of some of these scenes would have made the film stronger. Also, the DVD looks and sounds amazing. The picture is sharp and the Dolby Digital sound is incredible.
If you are curious about this movie, I think that it is worth a rental, at least. It may not be for everybody, but I think that it's much more fun that most of the movies that came out this summer.
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