Running Scared - quick review

Discussion in 'Movies' started by Patrick Sun, Feb 25, 2006.

  1. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Moderator
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    Believe it or not, I found this film to be very entertaining and watchable. From the very start, the film engages your attention and pretty much retains it for its 2 hour running time. There is one detour that leaves you with more of a "what the hell was that doing there" reaction, but overall, a nice brutal crime mob-related story that involves a gun that was used to kill a cop, tough kids, hookers, pimps, corrupted cops, mobsters and others. It is a violent film, not for the squeamish.

    Paul Walker does a nice job, he goes through the emotional gamut and was quite believable as Joey, the mobster who has to find the problematic gun before the cops find it and tie it all back to him and his mob cronies. The supporting cast is also pretty good, I liked his wife (played by Vera Farmiga), and his son and son's friend Oleg.

    I give it 3 stars or a grade of B.
     
  2. Simon Massey

    Simon Massey Cinematographer
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    It was the "detour" which spoiled what was an entertaining film - it's like the scene came from a completely different film. That and one ending too many was what spoiled the film.
     
  3. MikeRS

    MikeRS Screenwriter

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    This film has the creepiest villains I've seen in a long while.

    The pedophile couple


    In our desensitized times, I think this type of crime can still get under the skin. And it really does in this film. "Pure evil" is what it defintely evokes.

    Very solid film with some excellent direction. Plays like a dark fairy tale (as the end credits sequence reiterates). I'm also impressed with how different it felt to "The Cooler".

    Sadly, I have a feeling this will be one of those flicks alot folks only discover on DVD.
     
  4. Ryan L. Bisasky

    Ryan L. Bisasky Second Unit

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    i really liked it as well. everyone in my theater (well the 6 or 7 of us that were in the theater) clapped when the wife shot the pedifile couple.

    My only main gripe is with the ending having Joe live at the end didn't feel right, and made it a feel good hollywood ending, and made it feel like a reshot ending at the last second.

    otherwise great flick, surprised they went that far with the oral sex scene.
     
  5. Nathan V

    Nathan V Supporting Actor

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    As far as movies that come out in February and starring Paul Walker go, this is a masterpiece. An extremely exhilerating and intense viewing experience with good characters, great situations, and absolutely brilliant camerawork. Wayne Kramer knows how to plan out a scene. The camera constantly floating around the characters, flying down hallways, always nervously reflecting the emotion of the scene. there are also some short but virtuoso tracking shots. Kramer has an excellent compositional sense and knows just when to go back to a wide shot, or hold. The entire film takes place mostly at night, and the shadows are harsh with little gray tones. The film is very grainy, and truly a beauty to behold. The finale is lit with blacklights. There's even a shot where the camera negative slips out of its sprockets! There are no Tarantanian monologues or hip references; in this film, everything is fast, serious, nd immediate. The violence is extreme but appropriate to the story. Walker's performance is about as good as it could be, given the circumstances; the film moves so fast there's hardly any time for him to act. nevertheless, it's a realistic and sensible perf (not to mention a character the audience can really get behind). An excellent, throbbing, intense film that actually will have you leaning "on the edge of your seat." By virtue of the type of film that it is, it can't be called a masterpiece, but as far as gangster genre entries go, this is one of the most riveting in a while, with a very solid performance, strongly focused plot, and excellent stylistic sensibilities. Kramer may really go somewhere.

    Regards,
    Nathan
     
  6. MikeRS

    MikeRS Screenwriter

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    That was a cool moment because it didn't feel showy. The film was accelerating to a real surge of narrative tension at that point.

    A nice little reprieve. [​IMG]
     
  7. Craig S

    Craig S Producer
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    I gotta echo the general consensus here - this was an intense and thoroughly gripping film. The plot doesn't really hold water in retrospect, but it doean't matter, because the film's momentum keeps you on the edge of your seat almost the whole time.

    The "detour" that has been mentioned did seem like it was from another movie, but it was such an intense scene I didn't care. I've never heard of Vera Farmiga before, but I really liked her in this film, and in the scene in question she's particularly effective.

    Paul Walker surprised me here - really nice work from someone who's been dismissed as nothing more than a pretty boy. The supporting cast all did good work, especially the two boys.

    And I'm glad someone else mentioned the end credits - they were very clever, and a nice surprise as something like that is completely unexpected in a movie like this. They reminded me a bit of the end credits for Lemony Snicket, odd as that may sound.

    Unfortunately, the film debuted in 9th place, so it probably won't be in theaters long. If it sounds interesting to you, go see it soon!
     

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