Sunday, February 26, 2012

This Means War

This evening we went to see This Means War, which I thought was the best of a bad bunch; the other films showing in Singapore at the moment are all miserable dreck, sometimes involving Liam Neeson being savaged by a bear, and if nothing else, Reese Witherspoon is a decent comic actress.

I’d spent the day drinking prosecco, so I was hungover by early evening and not really keen on going out, but at the same time I couldn’t face the idea of another evening sat in the hotel room, so off we went.  And I was pleasantly surprised.

To make This Means War, you take two parts True Lies, one part Generic Bromance, and muddle them together with Brad Pitt’s haircut from Mr & Mrs Smith, and you’re done.

That’s not actually a bad thing.  If I’d known in advance it was directed by McG I might not have gone to see it, but the action scenes are well shot (you can usually understand who’s doing what to who, rather than having a series of fast cuts as unidentified fists pummel anonymous bellies).  It’s fairly predictable: within the first ten minutes it’s abundantly clear how the film will end, but just because it runs on rails from beginning to end that doesn’t mean it’s not an enjoyable ride.

Plus, it’s the only film I’ve watched that includes the paintings of Gustav Klimt and a joke about fingering, which shouldn’t have had me laughing so hard, but I had to stuff my knee in my mouth to stop myself from roaring too much. Should this sort of thing be permitted in Singapore?

Tom Hardy doesn’t look quite as enormous as in Warrior, but he’s popping up all over the place; I think I saw him in a dodgy beard in the trailer for Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, although he scrubs up better in this. Chris Pine is more your standard generic American beefcake, and there were a few places where we could have done without such elaborate showing off by the director, but this was a great 98 minutes of silliness, finished off with a frankly ridiculous yet very satisfying use of Reese Witherspoon’s backstory to save the two heroes.


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