Film history is littered with proposed projects that seemed tantalizing in concept, but somehow never found their way before the cameras. But were these aborted efforts destined to succeed? Seriously, would Stanley Kubrick’s proposed biopic of Napoleon or Alejandro Jodorowsky’s “Dune” been instant classics? I think that some vigorous debates could be enjoyed on whether or not we should be fortunate those works never got made.
The remake of the 1987 obscure action flick with Scott Glenn, Denzel Washington takes the mantle this time around as Creasy, an ex-soldier whose committed gruesome crimes and is desperately trying to seek penance and is constantly haunted by the fact of his crimes. He applies for a job to guard a very important business man’s daughter since there have been a rash of kidnappings under the rule of a mysterious mob boss, but when she’s Creasy is ambushed, shot down, and blamed, the girl kidnapped. he’s now on the hunt to find her and will stop at nothing to make all the people involved suffer miserably. I’ve never seen the original film starring Scott Glenn, so advantage: Hollywood, but that doesn’t mean this movie was anywhere near a ball to watch, especially since it’s far from anything I expected. You know, like a movie with a plot? What, you say, there is a plot! Show me it and I’ll credit you.
Based on the true story of Antwone Fisher who rose to fame as an acclaimed writer from a life of hardship and directed by legendry Oscar-Winning actor Denzel Washington (Training Day, Glory), new comer Derek Luke takes the title role of Antwone Fisher, a young Navy seaman with a short temper who gets into many fights with different men in his regimen. He’s assigned a therapist Dr. Jerome Davenport, a militant but eager psychiatrist who attempts to break through to Fisher. He’s only given three sessions to see the soldiers and give an evaluation and recommendation regarding their fate with the military, but when Fisher refuses to talk, Davenport persists and week after week they meet until Fisher decides to start talking. Little does he know that not only is Fisher receiving the therapy, but Davenport as well who is having marital troubles with his wife whom are often estranged with each other emotionally. Davenport sees something in Fisher, something special, and he inevitably breaks him.
This movie has a lot of heart, sure, but it doesn’t have a good story to go with it. The movies story and pacing is so weak and slow, that at times it makes it hard to watch. It has excellent plot devices yet never pulls through with them. For example, the entire hostage scene with Denzel in the hospital felt so rushed, and badly paced that you feel more confusion than empathy. I felt it could’ve gone for a good hour, yet only lasts for about a half-hour. Too bad. I didn’t appreciate the producers adding Eddie Griffin as comic relief, since we’re supposed to feel for Washington’s character and his plight.
It’s Rookie cop Jake Hoyt’s first day on the job and he must now meet up with a seasoned professional the charismatic cop Harris who takes a liking to him and decides to take him on a ride along to show him the ropes of the inner city, but what he has to show young Jake is beyond anything he ever learned in Police Academy. In probably Denzel Washington’s best performance in years, he is phenomenal as the dangerous and sly Harris.