Browse Category: Chase

RECAP: The Bourne Identity

The Bourne Identity (2002): Doug Liman

Based on the Robert Ludlum series of books, The Bourne Identity came to theaters 22 years its eponymous novel. More importantly, the movie arrived on the heels of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, an event that forced any movie dealing with the US government, terrorism, or Americans abroad and in trouble to be viewed through that lens.

The Bourne Identity was filmed before 9/11, and that probably saved it. Director Liman often battled with the studio, which wanted several reshoots and rewrites, and we can only imagine that a huge terrorist attack would have woven into the story had the timing worked. Somehow, the movie came out great.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: A man with superior fighting skills awakens in the sea with no memory of who is, and he fights a lot of people until he finds out his identity. Continue Reading

RECAP: Furious 7

Furious 7 (2015): James Wan

“Lucky seven” might be Hollywood’s new catchphrase. After Fast and Furious (#4) barely outgrossed the original, eight years later, the next three films ticked upward, ending with Furious 7. The 2015 entry in the car franchise earned more than $350 million domestically and topped $1.5 billion worldwide. Furious 7 made more money outside America than the other six movies made combined in America.

Compare those results with The Force Awakens, the all-time box office champion, also seventh in its franchise, and you have good reason to keep churning out franchises.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: After felling the bad guy in the last movie, the bad guy’s badder brother enters the fray to take vengeance on Dom and company.  Continue Reading

RECAP: Jason Bourne

Jason Bourne (2016): Paul Greengrass

Strap on your puke bags, kiddos, because Greengrass and Damon are back to shaky-cam you to oblivion. After a forgettable Bourne outing minus Bourne, Matt Damon returns to the fold for a cool $25 million, and to right a few more wrongs buried in his forgotten past.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: Jason Bourne returns to the grid to find out what his father had to do with Bourne’s crappy adult life as an assassin.   Continue Reading

RECAP: Big Game

Big Game (2014): Jalmari Helander

Finnish writer/director Jalmari Helander cooked up a fun story that evokes Richard Connell’s “The Most Dangerous Game.” What if, instead of hunting humans, you hunted the most powerful human in world history–the American president?

That’s the movie Big Game is. What startles most is the price tag: $10 million. Samuel L. Jackson earns at least half that per movie, plus someone had to pay Ray Stevenson, Victor Garber, Jim Broadbent, Felicity Huffman, and the other Finnish actors on screen. And there’s the crew and all that.

Despite the absurdly low sum for shooting the film, Big Game finished its production as the most expensive movie ever produced in Finland. In per capita terms, the movie would equate to a $600 million dollar production in America. No movie has yet cracked half that figure.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: A Finnish boy stumbles upon the biggest prey of all time–the President of the United States–and tries to save him so his dad will consider him a man.  Continue Reading

Mad Max

Mad Max (1979): George Miller

George Miller, on the road as a traveling doctor, shot a little movie about a cop fighting some thugs terrorizing rural, gas-starved Australia. Miller had spent some time in an ER, where he treated accident victim after accident victim, fueling a phobia of the road that turned into a, so far, four film franchise and launched the career of an unknown actor named Mel Gibson. Not bad for a doc.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: Well Adjusted Max fights crime in a crumbling society until a motorcycle gang kills his wife, driving him Mad.  Continue Reading

Mad Max: Fury Road

Mad Max: Fury Road (2015): George Miller

Imagine spending thirty years thinking about one creative project. You were ready to make this thing three decades ago, but forces of nature (and Hollywood, and Mel Gibson) conspired against you, always pushing back back back the thing you were trying to create. Imagine now that someone with some power somewhere gave you the green light, allowing you to unleash decades of pent-up ideas and energy, despite your seven decades of life. What would your creative work express? Imagine now that your long-dormant idea was a movie, a movie about the destructive nature of men, and a whole ton of things to blow up. Congratulations, you are George Miller, and you just made Mad Max: Fury Road.

ONE-SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: A renegade general steals an armored truck to ferry fertile females to freedom as her boss pursues her with his glut of gonzo gas guzzlers.  Continue Reading