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The Kidd Vs. SAVAGES

Oliver Stone has proven to be quite the schizophrenic filmmaker over the course of his career. When he’s on, he can make something powerful (BORN ON THE FOURTH OF JULY), intriguing (JFK) or socially poignant (NATURAL BORN KILLERS). When he’s off, we get ANY GIVEN SUNDAY, ALEXANDER and W., movies that progressively crumble along the way as Stone places spectacle over story on the priority list. His new film SAVAGES falls somewhere in the middle, delivering a gritty drug-infused crime drama with the feel of TRUE ROMANCE, minus all the fun. In fact, when SAVAGES does push forward with some over the top characters on the periphery that breathe life into the film, its three leads – Blake Lively, Taylor Kitsch and Aaron Johnson – instantly snap it back from becoming the wild ride its almost intent on being, smothering it in seriousness and fracturing the film into what it feels like two entirely different entities. It’s too bad that the one based around the three people the film follows the most is the one you least want to spend time with, after getting a glimpse at Salma Hayek’s drug lord, Benicio Del Toro’s enforcer and the drug enforcement agent played by John Travolta, who hasn’t appeared to be having this much fun on-screen since John Woo’s FACE/OFF. Who wants watch a bizarre threesome of lovers pine over getting out of the drug business,  when it’s those firmly entrenched in it that make the movie go? Not that Hayek, del Toro or Travolta glorify getting involved with drug cartels in any way, but when the alternative is three young actors who take the most roundabout ways to solving their problems directly to the point where you’re not even sure what their grand plan is as its happening… yeah, I’ll immediately sign up to hang out with the pushers.

Kitsch and Johnson play Ben and Chon, two childhood friends who’ve managed to grow, sell and distribute some of the best weed in the world through the California network they’ve established for themselves. But, in the drug world, they’re the equivalent of a mom and pop operation, and the Wal-mart equivalent in their industry, a drug cartel fronted by Elena Sanchez (Hayek) wants to take over their share of the market. Even in narcotics, there are such things as hostile takeovers. Ben and Chon aren’t interested in the offer though, choosing instead to get out of the business altogether rather than do what amounts to leasing their end of things for the next three years, cutting someone else in on their hard work. But you know those drug lords aren’t going to take no for an answer too kindly, and, in order to get Ben and Chon to play ball, their girlfriend O (Lively) – yes, both their girlfriends at the same time – is kidnapped, with Elena’s right hand man Lado (Del Toro) in the middle of the action. That puts Ben and Chon in the position of going on the attack, because no one is going to take their girl away from them and get away with it, not even those who are capable of lighting their enemies on fire or decapitating them. It’s a good thing Ben is a veteran of two tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, because otherwise it’d make for one uneven fight.

If SAVAGES was as simple as a power struggle between the small time and the big players, a division of the drug world, it might have played a little bit better, devoting equal time to the “bad guys” of this equation, as if anyone should really be viewed heroically for selling weed. But there’s a tangled mess of subplots concerning other cartels and informants and money laundering that eat up way too much of SAVAGE’s running time that when you do finally get back to this Ben and Chon versus Elena scenario, your concentration is shot, having been bounced around by story threads that don’t really go anywhere and seemingly take forever. I’m serious… SAVAGES may clock in at a bit past two hours, but it feels like you’ve been stuck in the theatre for almost double by the time Ben and Chon decide to finally carry out the one most intelligent power play they have against Elena, which the audiences realizes not too long after our first introduction to Hayek’s character. That may mean SAVAGES would have been over in about 45 minutes, but, in retrospect, less could have certainly been more for Stone’s latest.

This does look and feel like your typical Oliver Stone flick, too. Between the random imagery, his love of color filters and some speed-up/slow-down techniques, Stone pulls every trick he knows from his playbook, but it never quite fits in with the story he’s trying to tell with SAVAGES. This should be a dirty movie about drugs and those who are moving them, as evidenced by one rather gory torture scene. So, if you’re going to tell a story about these bad people and the horrible things they do in order to make their living, over-stylizing the way you present it to us doesn’t really make a lot of sense. My eyes shouldn’t be distracted by the unnecessary color changes. They should be focused on that eyeball that’s popped out of that guy’s head, which feels as if it’s staring at me in every shot it’s shown.

Johnson, Kitsch and Lively just don’t make for a good core of actors for a film of this nature to be built upon, especially since it puts them in a position for veterans like Hayek, Del Toro, Travolta and Demian Bichir to act circles around them. One side of this film is committed to be entirely serious about the material while the other seems to have embraced some caricatures of their archetypes, making for a movie that feels split in what it’s trying to do. I’m all for Travolta, Del Toro and Hayek hamming it up here, because it elevates SAVAGES from dull to exciting in the moments they’re involved. In fact, such a disparity is on full display when you’ve got a lively (no pun intended) conversation between Travolta and Del Toro that is full of the juice the rest of the film is lacking.

Lively is the first big problem, as right from the start with her uninspired voiceover/monologue, her performance feels forced. On top of that, her position in the middle of these two best friends as the love of both their lives never really comes across properly. Look… if you want to set this love triangle up as one giant bisexual open relationship, go right ahead… establish it and really sell it, and I’ll get on-board. I could buy into three people living an alternative lifestyle as it is also engaging in an alternative love life amongst each other. However, Lively never comes across as so desirable that Ben and Chon can’t absolutely live without her. Even when they talk about splitting town at an early point in the film, she’s not smart enough to understand that means her, too. On top of that, Lively’s crystal clear non-nudity contract clause does her a disservice in SAVAGES, as perhaps getting a look at the goods she’s hiding beneath her long-flowing dresses might convince me that it’s her looks that are keeping these two friends simultaneously interested, when it’s not her smarts or her personality. They don’t even get to have her naked when they have sex, whether individually or together. Who wants to risk their lives for a woman with what amounts to insecure body images, at least in how it could be interpreted in the movie? I’m sorry, but if we have to fuck while you’re still fully dressed, including in the bathtub, I’m not taking on ruthless drug lords to get you back.

    

It’s easy to pile on Kitsch after JOHN CARTER and BATTLESHIP, but at least in his defense here, it’s not entirely his fault for the lifeless performance he gives in SAVAGES. It’s just the way the character is written. He’s the more business-like, no-nonsense side of the drug-dealing duo, and, as a result, Kitsch plays him as such. It’s an unexciting character that is difficult to get behind, because there’s nothing to identify with, nothing to root for… Kitsch comes across as a shell of a man, which is most likely what Stone was going for, when you take into account Chon’s service history, but it makes for a rather uninteresting character to watch, and one that really calls upon the actor playing it to do the bare minimum, much to his detriment. There’s a little more going on with Ben, as Aaron Johnson gets to play the brains of the operation to Kitsch’s brawn. He understands the complexities of their situation and hopes for simple answers, but there’s definitely a lot more thinking going on with Ben that Johnson is able to bring out in the film, even if there’s not a lot of room to show it. He’s the unwilling participant in the downward spiral their situation has developed into, drawing you to his outsider presence in a world to which he really doesn’t belong.

SAVAGES is an okay movie for quite some time, showing flashes of really good, such as a tense moment when Ben and Chon may or may not get pulled over by a state trooper while hauling a whole lot of narcotics, and enough bad, namely everything involving Lively, but then it gets truly awful rather quickly when it decides upon its resolution to the entire story. For a filmmaker who has made it a point to be controversial and bold throughout stretches of his career, the ending to SAVAGES is the most pussy move I’ve seen Oliver Stone pull ever. It’s such a cop-out that, even if you were sold on everything you’d seen leading up to it, the groans will audibly ring out of your body, as you feel absolutely cheated that you’ve wasted all your time with the film for it to end up like this. Horrible is even a bit of an understatement for where Stone takes it… bullshit is much more fitting. For all the goodwill SAVAGES earns with some good stuff mixed in with its more mediocre, it’s instantly pissed away by sending you back into the lobby having ending so weakly.

SAVAGES is far from garbage, but the bad definitely outweighs the good, which is a shame, because some of that good is really entertaining to watch. There’s an element of fun missing to its wild cowboy atmosphere, as SAVAGES feels remarkably restrained for a film dealing with this drug dealing subject matter. This isn’t one of Stone’s best, and certainly isn’t his worst, but that speaks volumes for what it ends up being – a rather safe film made by a usually bold man. 

 

-Billy Donnelly

"The Infamous Billy The Kidd"

BillyTheKidd@aintitcool.com

Follow me on Twitter.

Readers Talkback
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  • July 6, 2012, 3:19 p.m. CST

    I really want to see this.

    by Cletus Van Damme

  • July 6, 2012, 3:32 p.m. CST

    Why do we need needlessly gory torture scenes in movies?

    by MISTER RUMBLES

    What we need is more titties.

  • July 6, 2012, 3:37 p.m. CST

    tl/dr

    by girugamesh

  • July 6, 2012, 3:42 p.m. CST

    The Kidd is this site's Armond White

    by SirKicksalot

  • July 6, 2012, 3:48 p.m. CST

    d...did we just get a tl;dr on AICN? Ban girugamesh. Ban him NOW!

    by AlienFanatic

  • July 6, 2012, 3:52 p.m. CST

    Kidd may be a cynic, but Armond White is mentally ill.

    by Pvt. Duke

  • July 6, 2012, 3:53 p.m. CST

    Is JoBlo.com in this movie?

    by Goodbye_America

    Nice watermark!

  • July 6, 2012, 4:03 p.m. CST

    Breaking BAD

    by 1919

    Its done just about everything you can do in this genre , I dont think its possible any more to go beyond it

  • July 6, 2012, 4:07 p.m. CST

    Uh I freaking loved Any Given Sunday

    by Wcwlkr

    That was the last truly good Oliver Stone movie I've seen.

  • July 6, 2012, 4:08 p.m. CST

    Has there been a positive The Kidd review yet?

    by SifoDyasJr

    I've only seen "The Kidd vs." for everything. Is it really a review if it's just going to be negative by default?

  • July 6, 2012, 4:18 p.m. CST

    Agree with wcwlkr

    by critts

    Any Given Sunday is easily Stone's best movie from the past 15 years. It's no Platoon but it's still pretty damn good.

  • July 6, 2012, 4:32 p.m. CST

    Wow, another negative review from The Kidd.

    by positivelySlime

    I am so fucking surprised.

  • July 6, 2012, 4:45 p.m. CST

    "When he's off, we get Any Given Sunday"

    by Joey_Jo_Jo_Junior_Shabadoo

    Nope, Kidd just doesn't like football very much.

  • July 6, 2012, 4:55 p.m. CST

    Kidd undersold how awful this is

    by Anton_Sirius

    Seriously. It may be the worst movie of Stone's career.

  • And I would seriously ditch the whole "vs" thing. But that's just me I suppose, and probably just a nitpick.. But for me, seeing that almost turns me away from reading the review. Mainly because it seems your almost rooting for the film to fail, but you'll see what it has to offer. And I would agre with the consensus, AGS was pretty good. Looking forward to Savages. Thanks for the two cents anyways Kidd!

  • July 6, 2012, 5:17 p.m. CST

    Hack Job

    by mossad77

    I can't take any "critic" seriously, if he says "I can't buy into how much the guys love this girl if she doesn't get naked!" (which is pretty much what you said 'Kid'). Sounds to me like The Kid is just that. A kid. For all I know he's my age, but he sure as hell doesn't write like it. For that matter, anyone who says a director "pussys out" or whatever the wording was, doesn't get to call himself a critic. I'm done with this site. Call me when they have writers who think & write like adults. Like *writers*... Fuck it, what do I expect? It's the internet, and I'm just a regular schmoe calling himself mossad77. At least I don't try to get paid for my areshole opinions.

  • July 6, 2012, 5:20 p.m. CST

    @ zurenarrh Plenty of things.

    by wrongThinker

    All the Kidd said was that selling drugs wasn't heroic. It's not. If you think you're some kind of hero for selling drugs you are obviously stoned.

  • July 6, 2012, 5:23 p.m. CST

    The Kidd is the best reviewer on here right now

    by Rupee88

    He is not scared to call a bunch of bad movies bad in the face of criticism from you retards who have VERY low standards. He likes good movies and dislikes bad movies. And his writing style is just fine...he's not writing a doctoral thesis..it's a movie review on AICN. He communicates his thoughts and points and that is what good writing does.

  • July 6, 2012, 5:27 p.m. CST

    "He likes good movies and dislikes bad movies"

    by SifoDyasJr

    Name one movie on this site that he has liked. I can't find one. He was "vs." Brave, Avengers, and The Hunger Games. It's all been negative reviews so far. It's hard to take that seriously.

  • July 6, 2012, 5:30 p.m. CST

    Aaron Johnson

    by chewyou812

    This flick looks cool, but Aaron Johnson's involvement worries me. Not a big fan of his at this point.

  • July 6, 2012, 5:45 p.m. CST

    In defense of the Kidd (somewhat).

    by Sithtastic

    I know the Kidd can come off a cynic, but there might be the outlier possibility that a) he hasn't liked what's been offered since he started working for the site and b) he has standards. In that respect, he's the anti-Harry. I won't say he's what keeps me coming back here, but the voice of the cynic should not be neglected. Here, I can't fault him as Oliver Stone is one of those names that makes me wretch. I have found him self-indulgent, to put it kindly. Having seen the preview for this however, I am not completely deterred as it looks like Stone is not going to be overly political for a refreshing change.

  • July 6, 2012, 5:49 p.m. CST

    The Kidd VS. Enjoyment of Things

    by robbles

    It hurts to be here anymore.

  • July 6, 2012, 5:52 p.m. CST

    The Kidd VS. Trying Too Hard

    by Prior Walter

  • July 6, 2012, 6:18 p.m. CST

    I skip to the end of Kidd's reviews..

    by Red_Right_Return

    Because they are all the same. He's worthless as a reviewer as he is clearly not having fun at movies and is a severe pessimist.

  • July 6, 2012, 6:42 p.m. CST

    I dont even read kidds reviews anymore.

    by Joe Dissolvo

    Ive pretty much disagreed with every single last one of them.

  • July 6, 2012, 6:43 p.m. CST

    At worst, ANY GIVEN SUNDAY is still way above mediocre.

    by golden tribw

  • July 6, 2012, 6:43 p.m. CST

    And I don't recall much (quote) spectacle (/quote) in W.

    by golden tribw

  • July 6, 2012, 6:45 p.m. CST

    Bullshit is right!

    by Homer Sexual

    Totally agree with the review. This starts out good, but becomes boring, then terrible. I was on the fence until the end, which then makes the whole movie not-recommended. ps the audience laughed when Travolta first came on screen. It was weird.

  • July 6, 2012, 6:47 p.m. CST

    No Nude Blake Lively = No Sale

    by 3D-Man

  • July 6, 2012, 6:48 p.m. CST

    Oh, and can someone spoil the ending for me, please?

    by 3D-Man

  • July 6, 2012, 6:58 p.m. CST

    LOL...

    by Norman Colson

    the kidd takes his job as a movie critic too seriously. but it's okay.

  • Beasts of the Southern Wild and the drama from the Star Trek writers. Anyway, this is Kidd's best written review, by far. I've given him crap in the past for his questionable writing but this one was good. Nicely done.

  • July 6, 2012, 8:03 p.m. CST

    If you have a problem with weed protagonist...

    by Red11

    Pretend they are bootleggers running moonshine or coors. You gotta be able to root for the Duke Boys or the Bandit.

  • July 6, 2012, 8:15 p.m. CST

    Kidd doesn't "get" this movie, that's clear from his writing; it's not that hard to get.

    by Stereotypical Evil Archer

    Sorry Kidd, you need to study up, son. Learn something, then rewatch the movie.

  • July 6, 2012, 8:21 p.m. CST

    The Kidd is a Nolanite (and I quote "...In Nolan we trust...")

    by aphextwin

    there lies the problem

  • July 6, 2012, 8:30 p.m. CST

    Fucked in the bathtub with clothes on?!

    by death metal batman

    That's all you had to say.

  • July 6, 2012, 8:53 p.m. CST

    The Kidd also seemed to quite enjoy "Safety Not Garaunteed"

    by TylerSnow815

    Still haven't gotten to see it as the closest its playing is about two hours away, but I look forward to seeing it eventually.

  • July 6, 2012, 8:59 p.m. CST

    The Kidd vs The baryonic universe

    by DoctorZoidberg

    He only likes dark matter

  • July 6, 2012, 9:20 p.m. CST

    "pussy move"=happy ending?

    by Drath

    Just a guess, Lively and Hayek's characters some how switch places--I'm guessing Hayek's awful wig plays a part in the confusion--so that Lively survives and rides into the sunset with her two lovers, their enemies dead in proper Die Hard fashion (ie, improbably, but if you're upset about lack of reality then you shouldn't be watching movies). That or the veteran sacrifices himself so Lively and the other guy--a weak pacifist who'd have died on his own--can live happily ever after. Either way, I'm pretty sure any ending where Lively doesn't die will not be popular.

  • July 6, 2012, 9:40 p.m. CST

    The Kidd vs. Shitty Writing

    by DanielPlainviewOnVacationInBoston

  • July 6, 2012, 9:47 p.m. CST

    The trailers...

    by Andrew

    for this movie had the same vibe as that movie Domino. Generic story, heavily stylized. It's like dangling keys in front of a cat. The cat's gonna like it, but everyone else is all, calm down man, they're just keys.

  • July 6, 2012, 10:09 p.m. CST

    Natural Born Killers? Seriously???

    by Citizen Sane

  • ...thank you sir! You take a hard look every time. I like some of the movies you can't bring yourself to, but sometimes people are just blowing smoke and it's nice to know before we wasted our money, you told us so. That's what criticism is for. And this shit looks like U-Turn. Hit & miss. Oliver stone needs to be reigned in by subject matter like Vietnam or the corporate industrial complex.

  • By FAR, Stone's worst movie

  • ...cheers holmes! Forever in your debt. Not being sarcastic, or ironic. Conan.

  • ...and greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Most directors dream of ever scratching the surface of lasting popular culture. Hope Savages pleases me more than it did The Kidd.

  • July 6, 2012, 10:24 p.m. CST

    What thulsaboom said.

    by Mostholy

    All of his other good-to-great movies notwithstanding, Stone has a lifetime pass for the Conan script. A few months ago they were just another snake cult... This better not be Haggah!

  • July 6, 2012, 10:29 p.m. CST

    The ending spoiled. SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER

    by Mostholy

    Since two people have asked, and this movie's a Netflixer anyway, the ending: SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER The big climactic shootout in the desert goes down with all the baddies dying and Ben (Aaron Johnson) getting shot in the throat. Chon (Taylor Kitsch), pretty banged-up himself, uses his morphine packs on all three leads, so they all die together in a drugged-out bloody mess. But then. It turns out that was some effed-up fantasy of O's (Blake Lively), and when it goes down for reversal, the DEA show up (on account of Del Toro actually being an informant for Travolta, and vice-versa.) The three lovers live semi-happy ever after in the (noble savagey) third world somewhere. END SPOILER Anyway, the movie's decent entertainment. Nowhere near as good or as seminal as Nixon or Natural Born Killers. Nowhere near as terrible as Alexander. It hits at about the level of Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps.

  • July 6, 2012, 10:29 p.m. CST

    The Kidd Vs Assholes Who Can't Stand a Dissenting Voice...

    by ThulsaBoom

    ...a lot more Nazi's left then we thought, eh? What's wrong about being pleasantly surprised because a movie is getting held to a high standard by the scrutiny of the media? Reign of Fire anyone? IMHO, it is much more equitable to the viewing experience than painting a movie as a masterpiece when it simply has a few good ideas. Avatar anyone?

  • July 6, 2012, 10:31 p.m. CST

    But yeah, the 'Vs' thing opens you up to confrontation...

    by ThulsaBoom

    ...damned manifest destiny!

  • July 6, 2012, 10:33 p.m. CST

    Thanks, mostholy. Much obliged.

    by 3D-Man

  • July 6, 2012, 10:35 p.m. CST

    @mostholy, I would sell Haggah to slayer such as you?

    by ThulsaBoom

    King Conan! 2015!!

  • July 6, 2012, 10:35 p.m. CST

    Chew slowly, it's the good stuff.

    by ThulsaBoom

  • July 6, 2012, 10:37 p.m. CST

    er...that should say, "TO as slayer such as you" of course...

    by ThulsaBoom

    ...Krom!!

  • July 6, 2012, 10:37 p.m. CST

    Black Lotus! Stygian, the best!

    by Mostholy

  • July 6, 2012, 10:38 p.m. CST

    "to a slayer such as you" DAMN IT VODKA!!

    by ThulsaBoom

    Conan.

  • July 6, 2012, 10:39 p.m. CST

    Infidel defilers. They shall all drown in lakes of blood.

    by Mostholy

    Now they will know why they are afraid of the dark. Now they learn why they fear the night.

  • ...bring in Oliver Stone for touch ups on the script. You know, if Sorkin's busy. That...is another story.

  • July 6, 2012, 11:15 p.m. CST

    There comes a time, thief...

    by Mostholy

    when the jewels cease to sparkle, when the gold loses its luster, when the throne room becomes a prison, and all that is left is a father's love for his child. Fuckin' A Max von Sydow. Conan really is an underappreciated classic. They just don't make 'em like that anymore. Now they make 'em with Jason Momoa and CGI out the yin yang.

  • ...don't think I'll be able to bring myself to it. So happy we turned this into a Conan talkback. Dare I say we crushed our enemies, and saw them driven before us, even if women don't lament over fanboy drivel. Oh well, we will come to know the pleasure of women when we are bred to the finest stock. Don't make 'em like that anymore indeed.

  • July 7, 2012, 12:28 a.m. CST

    Bunch of dumbasses

    by Red_Right_Return

    Oh Kidd your negative reviews are so wonderful! Let me lick your balls because I'm a pessimist just like you who can't go to a movie to have some fucking fun. You idiots may have a point if his negative reviews were about even with his positive reviews, but shit reviews are just shit reviews.

  • July 7, 2012, 12:39 a.m. CST

    bangs two dudes the whole movie

    by Balkin Flabgurter

    and not one bitty titty

  • July 7, 2012, 1:19 a.m. CST

    you cast three boring young artificial non-actors, you get crap

    by chien_sale

    Oliver Stone you deserve all the shit

  • July 7, 2012, 1:20 a.m. CST

    The Kidd Nailed It On The Ending HORRIBLE ENDING!

    by DukeTogo84

    His words may be a bit harsh, but damn did he nail it on the head. A horrible ending!

  • July 7, 2012, 3:32 a.m. CST

    "Vs." may be a gimmick

    by positivelySlime

    But its not a clever, original, or funny one. It still sucks.

  • July 7, 2012, 7:53 a.m. CST

    Well well, people seem to love spiderman. So is kidd not in tune?

    by mistergreen

    Maybe he just doesn't get it?

  • July 7, 2012, 8:29 a.m. CST

    ("The Kidd is the best reviewer on here right now")

    by Todd1700

    Yes he is. And it's not even close. He appears to be the only reviewer here that isn't a sell out willing to trade a good review for a goody bag from a studio. And his review of this film is spot on to what I'm hearing from every other critic I trust.

  • July 7, 2012, 9:50 a.m. CST

    Nearly as unintelligible as Harry's reviews

    by Laserhead

    "three people living an alternative lifestyle as it is also engaging in an alternative love life amongst each other. " That's just one of the syntax-fucking examples that illustrate the reviewer's muddled thought process. The movie may indeed suck, but chin-fuzz here can't string together a coherent thought on the matter.

  • July 7, 2012, 9:52 a.m. CST

    hahahahahahaha

    by azguki

    "I’m sorry, but if we have to fuck while you’re still fully dressed, including in the bathtub, I’m not taking on ruthless drug lords to get you back." hahahahahahaaaaaaa

  • July 7, 2012, 10:31 a.m. CST

    you can't fault Kidd for his so-called "cynicism"

    by WINONA_RYDERS_PUSSY_JUICE

    I haven't been that impressed with this year's films. This is 2 years now where most movies are pretty mediocre. I enjoyed Prometheus a lot but I can't argue with all the complaints about the film, specifically the writing. Thankfully the TDKR screening got very positive reviews.

  • That's terrible

  • July 7, 2012, 10:47 a.m. CST

    The poster for this movie is sick though

    by Tim

  • July 7, 2012, 10:52 a.m. CST

    one-trick Kidd

    by malificus

    His writing is fine but he mewl-bitches about everything, it's like your that guy that everyone knows who really into film and when you get him started it's always some ego-born, scathing indictment of some well-respected work. And don't get him started on his favorite obscure foreign niche' genre cause you'll want to blow your brains out.

  • July 7, 2012, 10:55 a.m. CST

    yeah i know you're and not your

    by malificus

    just not caring that much about grammar right at this moment

  • July 7, 2012, 12:22 p.m. CST

    He's the worst reviewer on this site...

    by Red_Right_Return

    And really just brings it down to the level of every other egocentric critic of film on the internet. I guess that's what people think is cool. I've been on this site for over 10 years. It has never sucked as badly as it does now. Its teeming with assholes and trolls who just want to argue. Geeks can't enjoy films or they are called stupid. Kidd has maybe 2 positive (if you can call even those positive) reviews out of months worth of reviews. I'm sorry but that isn't realistic. Sure there are no huge classics out this year, but there have been some fun movies he has reviewed that were better than he tried to make us believe (Avengers?). If you trust his reviews you are a fucking idiot and the very reason I will likely be leaving this site and never coming back. I've been searching all over for something better and I think I've finally found it. A place where people who aren't pessimistic whiners and have some imagination actually read reviews and chat about them. So all of you people like Rupee88 and those of you who like a reviewer like Kidd can shove this site up your ass. Goodbye.

  • July 7, 2012, 1:47 p.m. CST

    I love how all these negative fucks only trust negative reviews

    by JackSlater4

    Watch the movie, then form your own opinion

  • Boy the studios love you. If we have to go see every rancid piece of shit they pump out before we can form an opinion then where is the incentive for them to produce anything worth a damn? If we all followed this advice every movie produced would gross 600,000,000 domestically even if it was titled "Madea's Hysterectomy" and not fit for a dog to watch.

  • It's about us readers believe in the reviewer as honest, has integrity, and is clear about his/her review (logical). I think we all, most of us, smell something funny.

  • July 7, 2012, 5:15 p.m. CST

    reviewers go one of two ways

    by malificus

    they either turn into a quote whore and realize that getting paid to see movies then expound on them (and get paid yet) is the luckiest job on god's green earth, or they see too many movies, become jaded a-holes that are impossible to please and feed off the dark energy their negativity creates.

  • July 7, 2012, 5:34 p.m. CST

    Blake Lively was naked in her leaked phone pics....

    by Quake II

    And she has a rockin' body so what's the big deal? I've already seen Lively naked and so has the rest of world thanks to the internet. I'm suprised Stone didn't just cast an actress who would take it all off. I respect men and women who show it all in films. Carey Mulligan and Michael Fassbender both went full-frontal in Shame and it was necessary for that film. Blake Lively cleary has trouble with the "acting" part of being in films so she should consider dropping her pants really soon. It never hurt Angelina Jolie's (in the unrated GIA she barely wears any clothing) career, that's for sure.

  • July 7, 2012, 6:58 p.m. CST

    If you put STORY over SPECTACLE maybe you should READ BOOKS

    by CherryValance

    Movies are a spectacle. That's the whole point. Reading this review I was amazed to see you, whoever you are, telling Oliver Stone how to make a film. If you don't like it, fine, but reread your review and you'll notice that you let slip a few things about yourself. And they're not very nice or manly. I didn't like the ending ending either. I would have preferred it to have ended the way it seemed it was going to. But that is the only gripe I have with the film. There was nothing wrong with the plot or the acting, from anyone. It seems your main issue is that Blake Lively wasn't completely naked for you to see. In the first sex scene, it's meant that she's naked in the room. YOU, Mr. The Kidd, didn't get to see her naked. It seemed pretty certain that the two characters saw lots of her naked. But you're gonna sit there and cry about it because Blake Lively the actress didn't appear completely naked in this film. As if she owes you something. Like you paid to see her naked and now that you didn't you're gonna trash her and her film. That's so fuckin' rape-y. "Who wants to risk their lives for a woman with what amounts to insecure body images" I can't believe anyone wrote that. Go tell your mom she failed.

  • July 8, 2012, 10:58 a.m. CST

    Stone's Lack of Balls

    by Guy Steele

    OMG, Did Stone really Scewed-up a great Novel!!! Of all the big serious directors around you would think Stone would be the one to have 'BALLS'! But no he is a EUNUCH here! Go Figure! Sure Del Toro, Travolta and Hayek have grand fun. They are great to watch in action though I would have liked a little more form Demian Bichir, a very fine actor as well. Here he has really one grand scene early on. Now the three leads or ok. The narration wasn't needed and whew, that ending... or endings. Sweet G, why make this movie and let that happen? Part-n-Part of what made Winslow's novel so Hip, Smart, Now and Great, was his unflinching story telling. Sure its Funny, Hip and Cool but its also very Brutal, Cruel and unrelenting and its finish is a real bloody, tear soaked mess of 'Real World' sadness. That Winslow had a hand in the screenplay bothers me, but perhaps his hand was part-in-part to what made those scenes with Del Toro sparkle and hum. I would almost go out on the limb here and say that Del Toro should at least be considered a 'Best Supporting Actor' nod for this. He wouldn't win, but his performance is out-of-the-park. And speaking of out-of-the-park... how about that one weird thing during the terrible ending... that strange visual reference to 'Traffic' and Del Toro, that was strange and slightly unsettling.

  • July 8, 2012, 10:16 p.m. CST

    Just saw this and I thought it was very good.

    by jackofhearts29

    Good Oliver Stone. Not top tier, but better than most of his flicks. Also one of the best this year so far... if you're into this sort of thing, which I am when it's done right. It's pure Oliver Stone though, so if you don't like his kool-aid, you won't like this film. It's got all his bullet points... war, drugs, America's lost innocence, the mystical journey, spectacle shown to be both facade but nonetheless alluring.. testosterone on display... heavy doses of Hemingway, tequila, and knives... Ol' Billy's point seems to be that the story is too trippy and disjointed. THAT'S OLIVER STONE! He does pastiche stream-of-consciousness. The whole gestalt works for sensory effects, but the important parts of the story poke through where they are needed in nicely defined scenes. Oh, and I thought the ending worked well. It's a good way to play off the whole "Tragic end vs. Hollywood end" issue, and it fits the central character. It's about the loss of a certain kind of innocence, and the symbolic rebirth that comes when you stare evil in the face and then come back with a new respect for the complexity of life. Sometimes endings are too "wrapped-up", but this one felt real. I won't go into it any more just so's to avoid spoilers... but I liked it a lot.

  • July 10, 2012, 12:23 p.m. CST

    Wayne's World ending...

    by Charles

    are you fucking kidding me????