Being that I enjoy Oliver Stone pictures, I decided to check this one out. Lately, I have been on the hunt for good movies to watch from my favorite directors. This film did not disappoint at the end but was a bit slow in the beginning.
(Note: A good friend of mine in the film industry once told me that if I enjoy a director’s style and types of movies that in general I will probably enjoy their future work. I know this may not be the case all of the time but for me it has been for most of the time.)
Before I get into the review, I will say this is not a typical Oliver Stone type of movie — it’s not a period piece like many of his films. Though, his style did shine and made the movie worthwhile for me to see.
To be frank, this is an action and mob type of motion picture. So, I will warn you that it’s probably for folks who enjoy these kinds of flicks.
(Note: If there are any Scorsese fans out there, this one may interest you as you may be able to relate.)
In true Oliver Stone fashion, the movie is more of a narration. It is told by the point of view of the girl, O (played by Blake Lively), who is caught in the business tangles of the two loves of her lives, Chon (played by Taylor Kitsch), and Ben (played by Aaron Johnson) who both run a marijuana growing business.
Unfortunately for Chon and Ben (as in all business dealings), there is a lot of competition in their business which attracts the eyes of some very high profile Mexican cartels. To their dismay, both Chon and Ben find themselves trapped and at the mercy of one big group led by Elena (played by Salma Hayek) who enlists her henchman Lado (played by Benecio Del Toro) to strong-arm them into joining their alliance.
In turn, Chon and Ben are forced to enlist the help of Dennis (played by John Travolta), a DEA agent on their payroll. And so, the chase begins as a game of cat and mouse playing for survival.
This film is one that you really have to pay attention — there are a lot of details and characters involved. If you miss them, it may not make as much sense to you in the end. So, I found myself concentrating throughout the movie so as not to miss anything critical.
Some parts of the movie are a bit predictable. Yet, there are others that are not. At times, I found myself on the edge of my seat anticipating what would happen next.
(Note; For those who saw the film, you’ll know what I’m talking about especially towards the end.)
I found it interesting how the main characters of the movie (i.e. Chon, Ben and O) are fairly new and young actors/actresses. It was fascinating to see the dynamic between them, the young actors/actresses, and their interaction with the older and more experienced ones we have grown up with (i.e. Salma Hayek, John Travolta, etc). There was nothing bad about it — just different.
(Note: Though, I will say the talent of the more experienced actors/actresses in this film did shine and steal the show. Without them, it would not be the same.)
For the most part, I did enjoy the movie as it all came together at the end. Though it did start out a bit slow, it had a good storyline and interesting characters. Some parts kind of dragged but the action was good and kept my attention especially the twists and turns which is always a plus in my book.
If you’re in the mood for an action and mob type of film, you may want to check this one out.
Film Gurl’s 15 Minute Rule: NEUTRAL
Happy movie watching!
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