Mercury Plains (2016) Poster

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3/10
No it's not the old Clint ... But it looks more like "The Goonies meet Sicario"
Peter Pluymers15 February 2016
Every descendant of a famous person struggles with the same problems. They all have to prove themselves real hard, so they aren't referred to as "son of" or "daughter of". The prejudices that everything is served on a silver platter for them and thanks to their famous father and mother the path to success is without obstacles, is difficult to avoid. I guess Scott Eastwood (indeed "son of") knows what I mean. If you take a look at his his filmography, Scott has been really active. Although most films sound unfamiliar to me (except "Diablo" which, however, I gave up watching after 10 minutes due to the old-fashioned look and the fact that I'm not really a western fan), he also succeeded in getting a part in "Suicide squad". A movie I'm eagerly looking forward to. Time to see whether Scott can shake off the image of his über cool father.

"Mercury Plains" should have gotten the alternative title "Goonies meet Sicario". Because in essence this is just a film about a gang of scouts members (looks like it in a way) who are led by an (allegedly) charismatic, articulate leader to fight against drug gangs in Mexico. After witnessing some amateurish-looking skirmishes with local drug dealers and a raid by the police, the story evolves into a kind of survival trip in the desert. A bit like "Beyond the reach". It's situated at the Mexican border near notorious Mexican cities such as El Paso and Ciudad Juarez. Scott Eastwood plays the unemployed, American teenager Mitch. He's convinced by a friend to cross the border of Mexico. Thanks to his friend, Scott gets in trouble and is approached by Jesse (Justin Park) who tells him about The Captain (Nick Chinlund).

I tried to be unbiased and gave Scott a chance to prove himself. But I couldn't resist to compare him with his father. And the similarities are creepy anyway. It was as if I was looking at the young Clint again. The same facial structure and profile. The same calm and controlled expression. Also a man without many words and thoughtfully taking every possible option into consideration. Even the intonation of his voice and the controlled manner of answers are similar. Without any doubt Scott's future looks bright. As long as the future films he's going to play in, are from a higher level. Because in general you can say that this was an abominable bad movie, full of improbabilities and ridiculous situations.

Scott's acting was by far the best that you could admire in this movie. That's not so hard since the rest of the cast just made a mess out of it. Maybe the age caused it. But sadly enough Chinlund wasn't too convincing either. And Angela Sarafyan looked desirable, but her part was meaningless and pathetic. Furthermore, I was wondering the whole movie if Mitch's step father actually wasn't worrying about his missing SUV. Most laughable fragment was a confrontation with a known drug dealer. As told by The Captain he seemed to be guarded heavily. But I never saw a dangerous drug dealer being overpowered this easy. The guerrilla operations carried out by this group of young people against seasoned drug cartels, resembled those of old B-movies. The denouement in the sweltering desert looked considerably better, but by that time I already fought against the urge to stop watching. Hopefully Scott Eastwood goes his own way and will be offered a part in a decent film. Like the old Eastwood once said: "Improvise, Adapt and Overcome".

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5/10
Unbelievable. And that's not a compliment
Rodrigo Amaro25 February 2016
"Mercury Plains" is one of those films that in order to succeed just needed fifteen rewrites of the script, at least, to become something truly good or more than just watchable. But nope. This is just like the junk food industry: fast, simple, cheap, somewhat digestible, never healthy or sustainable but it works to some, though the real thing never convinces.

With a more experienced writer this is the kind of plot that could work easily but here someone is making us force to use our suspension of disbelief to the max, and that's just wrong. Scott Eastwood plays a troubled guy with no prospects in life who runs away to Mexico along with a friend to get some cheap fun and thrills. Somehow, he gets recruited by a man called "The Captain" (played by Nick Chinlund, quite okay) who runs a paramilitary group who fights drug cartels. The group is formed by teens, kids and weird types who barely know to use a gun, but they're the ones taking over the place of the real cops and making things right. And as usual things go south, things are not what they appear and Scott is gonna be the real hero of the situation.

Effortless in action, mildly interesting scenes (the final conflict was good but the result from it was a real mess. Epic plot hole). If the idea of the movie is to serve as a pamphlet to paramilitary groups to deal with the drug problem in Mexico, then we're in big trouble, boy. Just goes to show that amateurish folks acting as if being real law enforcements, fighting against real dangers, cannot succeed in any way (unless those groups opposing their own governments in Latin American nations during many military coups between the 1960's and the 1980's. They had some powerful effects against organized movements).

A passable movie due to Chinlund's usual and nice effort as a villain; and Eastwood providing a suitable heroic look even though he's taking too much out of his daddy (silence and expression) and not doing anything creative. There's still time for him to become a real good actor. Except for the fore-mentioned reasons, some scenes here and there, "Mercury Plains" is just for desperate curious minds but you can go without it. 5/10
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8/10
Meditative study of masculinity and power, not your typical action thriller
cookie-wise3 February 2016
Those looking for an action-packed, shoot-'em-up thriller might be disappointed, but that doesn't mean there aren't some worthy ideas and narrative threads at work here. This is a slowly paced film, at times almost meditative, but one that rewards a patient viewer. Don't watch it for shootouts and chase scenes, but rather for a thoughtful treatise on men and boys, fathers and sons, the razor thin line between love and war, and the hollow attraction of lawlessness and moral anarchy -- all shot gorgeously in the dreamlike expanses of the Mexican desert.

The plot is fairly bare bones: a young 20something down on his luck, Mitch (Scott Eastwood), crosses the border from Texas to Mexico out of nothing more than boredom, and winds up getting entangled in a group of lost boys who've been taken in by a Fagin-esque leader, "The Captain," a middle-aged vet who uses his ragtag band to carry out vigilante hits on various drug runners and cartel branches. At first, Mitch is enticed by The Captain's promise of money and claim that something special lies inside of Mitch -- something no one else can see. To the completely lost man-child without a father figure, this serves as motivation to keep Mitch serving as The Captain's "top soldier," even as the group quickly devolves into pure criminal violence and bloody greed. By the end, Mitch is forced to find his own ethical code, something to dictate his sense of self-preservation vs. self-worth.

There is a lot at play here, talk of soldiers and kings and the ownership of territory, that all resonate deeply within our current climate of urban gang warfare and political fear-mongering and appetite for vigilante justice. Eastwood doesn't yet have the gruff gravitas and charisma of his famous father, but he shoulders the movie well, displaying a screen presence that belies his inexperience. The original score is haunting and beautiful, and the cinematography captures desolate landscapes and car chases with equal elegance. If you give yourself time to breathe with this film and meander along at its contemplative tempo, I think you'll appreciate its aim to be something more than just another shoot-out in the desert.
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9/10
Very good movie
posterelli24 November 2017
As a fan of his father's, it is refreshing to see another Eastwood in an action western role. Young Mr. Eastwood played a very good believable role. The acting was excellent. The plot was original. The directing was excellent. I look forward to seeing more movies of this type from these people. The movie could have been a little longer. No regrets. I give it A's for effort, originality and really just a great movie in this genre. This is a man's movie... not a critic's movie. Respect earned.
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1/10
Hard to believe
mikekozel17 February 2016
In a world of seasoned pros, young genius, and serious money, it is amazing to see a property with the Eastwood tag so mishandled, badly directed, obviously posed, set in a ridiculous and sloppy script, and dished out to the public as some beefcake manboy that can be shot at times to give us that glimpse of that tobacco spitting, grizzled icon we really loved. Rowdy Yates had better lines, better direction, better support, and a charisma this kid ain't got,and that was TV. The horse this new kid rode in on should be in the glue factory along with all the other dead horses. Incompetent management of this magnitude is really amazing. Not reading much about the flick? There is nothing here to write about.
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2/10
Boring and Dry
mhaggies-9563119 January 2016
Eastwood tries too hard. Movie is boring and dry. Giving it 2 stars for effort. Crying roles are too exaggerated and don't appear sincere. He could of taken some acting advice from his father to appear more natural. Music was good but very monotone for a movie of this caliber. Eastwood needs to find his own style and not try to be too much like his father. Even the style of movie was not unique but rather imitating the type of roles his father takes on. It's hard not to compare the two...this kid needs to find his own way , his own style, his own story if he wants to be a successful actor. Seems like he is using his own name to get famous. Why not be creative and call himself something different so he can stand on his own.
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8/10
Deliberately paced journey for self, embraces the slow burn
MirthlessChuckle10 February 2016
MERCURY PLAINS is the tale of Mitch (Scott Eastwood), a young man without a cause, stuck in a dead end town off in nowhere, Texas. When a friend suggests they take an impromptu trip to Mexico to shake things up, Mitch shrugs and rolls along. But after his friend bails on him, Mitch finds himself in league with a mysterious man known as "The Captain," the leader of a paramilitary group of children and teens. The Captain offers the chance for purpose and fortune, an offer that a lost Mitch can't find reason to refuse.

THE SETTING: The desolate Mexican desert is shot beautifully. It provides the perfect backdrop for Mitch's journey for self -- it often feels like the desert goes on and on without clear landmarks to orient yourself, which for Mitch, is a lot what his life looks like at this point in time.

THE CAPTAIN: Without spoiling too much, just know that this character is a fascinating one. Though he'd have Mitch believe they're very much alike, he's more accurately a foil: The Captain is one to wax poetic, while Mitch would rather stand back, observe, and listen. Mitch displays an inner noble need to help people, even if he doesn't always know how to express it, whereas The Captain says he has the boys' best interest at heart, but...well, you'll just have to watch and see.

GENRE: It's not an out-and-out actioner, it's not TAKEN, and it's not your typical shoot 'em up western pic either -- it's not trying to be any of those. The Eastwood name and the modern western setting may lead to you to believe it's going to be a certain kind of film, but if you allow yourself to experience it at its own pace, what you'll find is the story of a lost boy -- a young man wandering the desert, adrift in life -- who's handed a gun and given a mission, which forces him to reassess his own values and what's important to him.

IN SUMMARY: The movie's methodical pace is a reflection of Mitch's own approach to life, an approach that by the end is jarred loose and shaken to its core -- the best action sequences of the film build and explode as we near the finish line. His journey raises questions of ambition and power, of self-identity, of mob mentality -- all of which he has to face down and wrestle with himself.

MERCURY PLAINS takes its time, embraces the slow burn, and bucks the trends of its genre. So if you like your western action flicks with a little more meat on the bones, you should give this one a shot.
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5/10
A FUNNY THING HAPPENED ON THE WAY TO THE CASTLE
Michael Ledo21 May 2018
Warning: Spoilers
Mitch Davis (Scott Eastwood) has nothing going for him in Wilson Co., Texas. He borrows his step-father's black SUV and heads across the border with a friend only to find himself in trouble. He gets recruited by "The Captain" (Nick Chinlund) to be part of private law enforcement group which we quickly figure out is something akin from a Dicken's novel as Fagin, er uh The Captain teaches them their trade.

Scott Eastwood doesn't have a lot of lines which was good because he didn't do that well on the ones he had. The action was slow to build and then quickly over. I would expect this film to be discounted quickly or on a multi-pack within a year. Far more drama than action.

Guide: F-bomb, sex. No nudity.
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3/10
Boring and lack of content
tom-bartsch-255-45477530 August 2017
I thought this could be an interesting enjoyable exciting movie. But it was a disappointment. Especially the end of the film was unnecessary protracted. You have to watch so much minutes without action.

I had a notion that the action parts of the movie were very dilettante. A group of children without any plan and skills did some dangerous things. Normally they would have no chance against anybody with this kind of behavior.

The guy Mitch had often such a meaningless facial expression. I don't know what I should feel about this sparing of words guy.

All in all it was a boring movie without good action parts and I think the story could be told in much less time. The story could be told in circa 70 minutes.
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4/10
Sadly undelivering action excursion
davideo-213 August 2017
STAR RATING: ***** Saturday Night **** Friday Night *** Friday Morning ** Sunday Night * Monday Morning

Mitch (Scott Eastwood) is a former war vet living in a small mid-western American town, whose life is heading nowhere. However, one night, after running afoul of some Mexican pimps, he finds himself approached by a man known as The Captain (Nick Chunland) who sees potential for him as a private security operative, and Mitch accepts. Assigned to take out a number of targets, he forms a bond with his fellow recruits, but they gradually come to question their operation and The Captain's true intentions.

It's been a long time since we've seen the offspring of a famous screen icon showcasing their stuff for our consideration, and so it's a novelty that Scott, son of the legendary Clint, has appeared in this miniscule effort that has creeped out onto DVD. While he's fair as an actor in his own right, he inevitably doesn't hold his own to his legendary father, not that that's the main thing on your mind. This leading role of his has a premise with potential, exploring the murky world of private security, but while the set up is intriguing, sadly the story doesn't pay off.

Director Charles Burmeister strikes the tone and balance just right, creating a blurry, murky atmosphere that suits the mood of the story, matched with some suitably edgy characters on the good and bad divide that fit it well. Somehow, though, there's just not a strong enough foundation to guide the story with, not engaging enough at times and requiring too many leaps of faith at others. It's a throwaway effort when it should be a mesmerizing one, fully emersing the audience in the bleak, uncertain world of private security operations instead of just distracting them.

Hopefully, Eastwood Jr. will find something more relieving of his talents. **
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It's alright
Gordon-1121 April 2017
This film tells the story of a young man who has little future in his home town in the United States. He goes to Mexico with a friend for a bit of fun, but ends up being recruited to join a gang that targets drug dealers for their money.

"Mercury Plains" isn't a bad film. It is just that Scott Eastwood is too handsome and clean shaven to be believable in his role. In addition, when the gang is solely made up of teenage boys, one would really doubt the authenticity of the operation. The fact that he doubts his boss isn't immediately obvious either, because he is an introverted character. Overall, there are some good moments in the film, such as the abduction scene.
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what a totally unreal heap of...
voigaswolpertinger7 January 2016
Warning: Spoilers
so its time to write my first review. i found this movie, after having seen dawn patrol and figured it could have some similarities. but nope, let alone some dry desert scenes they got nothing in common. filming itself, the shots and all equipment seemed quite professional, yet that wont make up for a bad strange story. some lost kids being trained to wage guerrilla warfare on drug cartels to rip them off and make cash? crossing the line from proposed vigilante behavior to becoming criminals themselves? nah thanks. so well, there is sure worse stuff packed in films but for me it was crap. have a good one as it seems i gotta write a few more lines, lets say, Eastwood acted quite okay. the boss of the guerrilla was a total psycho and his 19!!! year old girlfriend not much of a looker. i got no idea why i did watch it to the end really.
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1/10
Pointless
Brian Williamson28 January 2017
A waste of time. Extremely poorly edited, the dialogue (script) is a joke. The plot was feasible if it had been better utilised. the cast should be ashamed, although they won't be as they will have been payed for their 'efforts'. I make no apologies for my English spelling 'mistakes', as I am English and it is grammatically correct to use 's' instead of 'z' in 'utilise'. This was pedestrian at most, uninspiring, predictable, badly set and filmed. It would definitely seem that the apple falls far from the tree based on this. Scott Eastwood has a presence, but more due to his heritage than anything else. The 'Captain' has some previous pedigree but it was wasted in this. My opinion and my advice is not to do as I did and watch this, because if you do, you'll regret what you could have done with that time.
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