Cover Art and Menu: 6/10
Two sexy mega stars posing with guns don’t do much for me, but I’m not the general drooling public. The menus are completely boring. From time to time a loop of blurry (an attempt at some kind of artsy look I suppose) video from the movie comes across the screen, and then back to the static image of either the Smith’s house, or the dune buggy Pitt drives in one scene. Seriously people, this movie has so much action and it’s quite entertaining, why drag down the DVD with such lackluster packaging? Will they never learn.
- Director Commentary – With two big hitters like Jolie and Pitt in your movie, you can’t help but be excited as the director. Mr. Liman does a lot of movie hype speak, which gets kind of annoying after a while. He does talk about the budget and what they had to do throughout production to get certain scenes done in spite of all their obstacles…always a sob story on these films with over a hundred million dollar budgets. So short on funds that they have to figure out creative ways of spending all that cash..haha
- Producer Commentary – Producers are not that interesting to me really. They talk a lot about money mostly, but sometimes you get an interesting story about how a scene got made under stressful or seemingly impossible circumstances.
- Deleted Scenes – Not much to speak of here really, just a few little deleted scenes, mostly just the extended original versions of scenes that made the movie but got trimmed for time purposes.
- Theatrical Trailer – A trailer is not a feature..so I refuse to comment.
- Making A Scene Featurette – I always like to see the dissection of how a film gets made so this is the best feature on the disc for me personally. It’s still not much though. A few minutes discussion and some clips from what was supposed to be a car chase, but turned out somewhat different due to budget constraints.
The Movie: 8/10:
Jolie? Blah. Pitt? He’s alright in my book. So, how would I manage to enjoy these two in an action flick? I’m not a huge action fan so this would be a challenge….or so I thought. I have to admit that I, as a woman and wife, bought instantly into the whole marital problems theme that starts the movie. A good looking couple stalled and stuttering when asked intimate questions about their marriage. This I can relate to. This isn’t going to be a mindless series of explosions and car crashes. There will be enough of that for sure, but it is injected with a bit of real life humor. No matter how it’s delivered, either as a quiet film set in a diner with no weapons or big stars anywhere to be found, or in a big budget action flick with grenade launchers, slick stunts, and well known talent on board, the tension between a husband and wife having relationship problems is something most of us can identify with.
Yes, this married couple is a bit different than most. I personally don’t have legs up to my neck and killer puffy lips, and my husband, while perfect in his own way, isn’t Brad Pitt. I do identify. At one point Jolie has hung new drapes and says if he doesn’t like them they can return them. He says he doesn’t like them and she replies, “You’ll get used to them.” Now that’s marriage folks. We all know there’s not a lot of room for compromise, just two people staring each other down knowing that if they lose this battle, they will have one coming down the road they may or may not win. It just so happens that with two assassins with lots of firing power and spy like reflexes, battles rooted in disagreements over drapes can turn into knife throwing, exchange of bullets, and hand to hand combat.
We don’t have assault rifles or hidden stashes of stockpiled weapons around our house, not that I know of anyway. We won’t end up blowing up our kitchen or blowing holes through our walls. The Smith’s are coping with their marriage issues with the added bonus of having been directed by their respective bosses to eliminate each other within 48 hours. Eliminate = kill. So, they have intimacy issues, they never talk, they’re bored with each other, and they aren’t entirely sure they love one another. Divorce seems blasé doesn’t it? But killing your spouse seems so lazy. Anyone can do that, don’t tell my husband.
Our happy couple goes through the motions of being secret assassins until they figure out that they are each other’s greatest rival in the people killin’ biz. After some little scuffles (little = massive), a few little quirky things like dropping her husband down a long elevator shaft, things become more clear…they might actually love each other. This is a problem since one or both of them is supposed to be dead in the next two days. Marriage is so crazy.
The stunts in this movie are all really good. I admit when I am sucked into enjoying an action flick for what ever reason, and I do think that well done stunts are the key to keeping the whole thing together. The car chases are top notch, with a few good explosions, but not too many, so it’s got enough eye candy to keep you busy amongst the bits about them resolving their personal problems. They have a serious discussion while racing at great speeds down a freeway being chased by multiple bad guys. It sounds obnoxious, I guess I just fell for all the good looking camera work, and equally good (though sometimes obvious) dialogue.
There’s also one of those unexpected sexy scenes that only Jennifer Aniston might not appreciate, if you know what I mean. This is a story about a husband and wife remember, so sex has to be addressed at some point. Why not at the end of a huge fight, broken glass on the floor, and many cuts and bruises? I know it doesn’t sound politically correct for a man and woman to be having a physical altercation. I’m sure some people will be offended by that. You just have to decide if you can get in your head that these are fictional characters, not your next door neighbors. If you behave the way these two behave and think it’s ok, you’re an idiot. It’s a movie, not a blue print for resolving marital problems.
I gave it an 8/10 because it does what it’s meant to do and it does it well. Deliver lots of action and a good way to showcase Jolie and Pitt in ways that they have not really been seen before. I give credit where credit is due. This is an action flick, and it’s not pretending to be anything else. When it’s all said and done though, the story behind the story isn’t that interesting. Competing assassin company bosses competing for business around the world and no big bad guy to hunt down or need to save the world, it kind of takes the wind out of the sails of what is otherwise a wham bam couple of hours of movie enjoyment.
It’s not for kids, and it’s not for people who are offended by violence, men and women fighting, or big lips. Everyone else might just get a kick out of it. I know I did.
This version of the DVD is too expensive for what you get. There aren’t many extras to speak of and the packaging is lame to say the least. If you just want to enjoy the movie rent it and don’t worry about adding it to your collection. If you must have the DVD wait a few months for Fox to get their heads out of their backsides and put out a special edition…that’s the way they play this game.
Overall Score 7/10