peteg's blog

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3.15pm session at River East 21, $9.79 + $1.17 tax = $10.96. A hazy morning turned into a beaut afternoon, so perhaps not the best way to burn one of summer's dying days. I got sucked in by Del Toro, I think, Josh Brolin (go W!), probably not Emily Blunt. It may have been Dana Stevens who tipped me over the edge with her assessment that Del Toro's performance was ace.

This is about the militarization of the police, in this case the FBI, and the unwitting co-option of U.S. domestic institutions by the CIA. Something we've seen before, like Traffic. There is also an unsubtle dig at having women in these sorts of roles; Blunt proves too weak to help the men tear down the drywall that hides the bodies in the opening straight-out-of-Se7en shocker. Moreover she is always quickly subdued (cowed) when she stands up for herself, and is regularly rescued by a man. So yeah, no country for women? I found her motivation to be so totally uncooked (essentially revenge for the loss of some redshirts) and inner life so absent that, for all the support from the blokes, I just couldn't get into it. Yes, Del Toro is totally fine here, though like Blunt he plays barely more than a cypher.

A. O. Scott is dead right that this is just violence, not a study of violence. That being the case, it may have worked better as a video game.