True to life film
Reviewed by Mukrak for Spy Game at 2010-03-19 07:15:53
Spy Game is a true to life composite of many real operations. Spy Game is more real than fiction and is based loosely on the character of intelligence operative Tom Golden, the son of an Arkansas dirt farmer. Golden was assigned to the CIA's Phoenix program during the Vietnam War. Nathan Thomas Muir was Golden?s CIA code name in Southeast Asia, and during his CIA operations in Indochina. Golden served a distinguished career in the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and the CIA. He served in Southeast Asia, Eastern and Western Europe, and Central and South America. Tony Scott does a great job of presenting the true to life dangers faced by Intelligence Agents in the field and the bureaucratic decisions sometimes made in Washington that are driven by politics.
Set in 1991, the film depicts the U.S. and Chinese Governments on the verge of a major trade agreement with the American President due to pay a visit to China to seal the deal. The Central Intelligence Agency gets word that their Special Activities Division operative Tom Bishop (Brad Pitt) has been captured trying to free an Englishwoman, Elizabeth Hadley (Catherine McCormack), from a Chinese prison near Su Chou (Suzhou). Bishop is being questioned under torture and will be executed within twenty-four hours unless he is claimed by the U.S.
The pace is great and the action is unbelievable. I couldn't believe that almost two hours had gone by when it was over. It's not as complex as Iron Man or Spider-Man 2 but it's loaded with intense fun. Everything in this movie is exceedingly better then what we saw in X3. Characters find their own distinctiveness and just flat out kick butt.
Visually, it's a sight to behold, with good effects and a dynamic sense of presence. I was very impressed with the direction and cinematography. The final showdown was a standout and will be remembered as one of the best comic book confrontations of all time. It's wonderful action mixed with nice drama. It so fits the main characters. The cast was used remarkably well and Hugh Jackman simply shines as Wolverine. Overall, I had a great time and thoroughly enjoyed every minute of this movie.
I finally caught "Prince Caspian" the other night. I was surprised at how much fun I had watching it.
- I liked the opening of the film and the progression of the opening titles over scenes of Caspian's escape from the castle.
- I liked the Reepicheep-point-of-view invasion of Miraz' castle.
- I enjoyed the high film-speed effect on some of the battle scenes, and how raw and energetic the combat between Miraz and Peter was.
- I was very surprised by how interesting Miraz was. I loved the scene where he was pressed by Edmund, and by his own council, into one-on-one combat with Peter. I loved that Miraz (most of the time) wasn't overplayed or underplayed - he seemed to have just the right amount of animation to seem corrupt and ambitious without becoming a simple caricature (certain sneering, Lord of the Rings villains come to mind).
The 4 Pevensie children intersect with Caspian much earlier in the film than they do in the book, which brings about some interesting conflicts within characters. There is the romantic attraction btw. Susan and Caspian. And the absence of Aslan has a different effect on the characters as they discuss their choices. There is a pronounced rivalry between Peter and Prince Caspian that, strangely, never seemed to sway the loyalties of the Narnians as I would expect it to. In the book, Lewis does away with any conflict between Peter and Caspian with a single line from Peter: "I haven't come to take your place, you know, but to put you into it." (p.184)
This is easily the best foul-mouthed puppet film since Peter Jackson's "Meet the Feebles" (though maybe not as edgy as the latter). It's a bit of inspired lunacy but I cannot recommend the unrated version as it adds nothing to the film other than dragging it down with unfunny fecal humor. Stick with the R-Rated version and you'll be fine.