Saturday, September 19, 2015
DRIVE HARD (2015)
Directed By: Brian Trenchard-Smith
Written By: Chad Law & Evan Law
Screenplay By: Brian Trenchard-Smith & Brigitte Jean Allen
Cinematography By: Tony O’Loughlan
Editor: Peter Carradous
Cast: Thomas Jane, John Cusack
A former race car driver turned driver's training instructor is abducted by a mysterious thief and forced to be the wheel-man for a crime that puts both in the sights of the cops and the mob and leads them all on a chase across Australia's Gold Coast.
I wasn't looking for much. I would have even accepted basic, but this is just bad and sad.
Directed By B-Movie Austrailian director Brian Trenchard-Smith the film could have gone either way. I was hoping for a more fun endeavor that was campy and plenty of inventive action. What you get was a very lame film
The film had a dumb 80's kind of action movie premise. Most of which would just require high speed car chases. The film can barely do that as most of the chases appear to be either slow or regular speed. So there goes the high energy.
The characters dress like it is still the 70's or 80's. which is also how the film treats the material
The action sequences that are here are rather slow and kind of seen more like a demo video or blueprint of how they are supposed to work.
As through most of the movie there is gunfire, but most of it is a result of not knowing if John Cusack's character is using real bullets or rubber ones that he seems to use liberally and never lets us know if he changed them. Which could have been a useful running joke. Unfortunately here it seems barely referenced.
I will give the movie some credit there is Only one scene of note. That go above and beyond to make the film at least partly decent. Then again it just might be that they are average bit amongst the dreck they are standouts. The accidental shotgun scene. Where a man puts his gun and accidently disarms himself. The only other thing if note here is John Cusack his character stays level headed and never worried throughout the whole film. Now while this makes his character look cool. It also raises a problem as we have a co-protagonist who has nothing to lose but never engages the film, his co-star nor the audience. He shows no emotion so it is hard for us to read or grab anything. It's like trying to hold onto a slick surface. There is no emotional connection at all. Even most minor action films give a little.
Which also leads me to question what happened to John Cusack? I understand the market is crowded and seems more Interested in special effects films, but I have noticed him appearing in a bunch of these horrible films. Where it looks like he is only in it for the money. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but he more or less appears to be giving Nicolas Cage a run for his money. They even appeared in the VOD title FROZEN GROUND with Vanessa Hudgens. The only difference is that John Cusack sometimes has a film that makes it to theaters. Him and cage both have this vibe of being private mysterious, but also seem to have a long lost glean in their eye that makes them seem defeated and not in the room at all. At least there is still a fire in the belly of Cusack or at least so it seems. As he manges to get roles in more independent artistically rewarding films. Though maybe as he decides to work for just paychecks. He picks roles where he really gets to sell out, or play roles that seem like fun. Compared to the roles he turned down before when his career was hotter. Now it seems like he is playing dress up. Deciding to travel more and do more international films.Hoping they barely reach the states. Like when celebrities do commercials, but usually for foreign brands.
The film just seems way too simple to go on for as long as it does it is never engaging and vices boring and seems like on stand-by fast.
Everyone seems here more for a paycheck rather than any passion in the film as a whole. The story is as tired as we have seen it and variations on it many times before and done better most of the time then here.
No offense to Thomas Jane, but he even deserves better than this. Even though this seems to be more his bread and butter.