Monday, 14 June 2010

"Guy Gets On A Subway And Dies... Think Anyone Will Notice?"

The One Where I Hope I Never Die On A Subway For Six Hours Before Anyone Notices

I love Tom Cruise, blah, blah, blah.

This film represented a real departure for him, though. He was a bad guy, went with the grey hair. It was a departure, from what Hollywood expected. Wanted. Most actors will do anything to work with Michael Mann, though - and here, Cruise goes for the film ahead of Box Office.

The film benefits it being original. A hit man hijacks a taxi for the night, so he can take out five hits. As a premise, it's up there with Speed. A simple idea.

At the risk of repeating myself, from my War Of The Worlds review, I've always "liked" Collateral. There were bits I loved. Cruise playing it straight, and evil. It obviously has Manns style, too.

Scorcese and DeNiro were linked to it, separately. I love the idea of DeNiro returning as a cabbie, especially the polar opposite of Travis Bickle... in another lifetime, maybe. I love even more, the idea of Ed Norton as Vincent... but this just works, for me.

It's a Michael Mann film. That switches a lot of people off straight away. Very procedural, into the minds of the cops chasing - even though we would rather spend time with the cab.

The film has aged well. Six years later and the music still resonates - this is a strong point of Manns films. Even the doubters would struggle to agree the shot of the fox crossing the road, lit by streetlights, is anything but stunning. Vincent realising there are other creatures at work, in the night.

The Club shootout is excellent. And it ends the way we knew it was going too. Strangely moving, when you think of Vincents description of L.A as "vacant".

The film loses it in the last ten, for me. Trying to make the action film, it's done well to avoid for the first 110 minutes. Cruise turns into Michael Myers. It jars. But if they needed some cool clips for the trailer, so be it.

It's a great little film. Well acted. Good script. Mature, sensible. Anti-Hollywood.

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