Friday, June 3, 2016

THE TRUST (2016)

Directed By: Alex Brewer & Benjamin Brewer 
Written By: Benjamin Brewer & Adam Hirsch 
Cinematography By: Sean Porter 
Editor: Lauren Connelly 

Cast: Nicolas Cage, Elijah Wood, Ethan Suplee, Sky Ferreira, Kevin Weisman, Steven Williams, Jerry Lewis

Waters and Stone are two nobody police officers who work in the evidence room of the Las Vegas Police Department. When Stone discovers an unusually high bail receipt in connection to a drug bust, the two friends set in motion a plan to find the source of the money. The film begins with a strange unnecessary scene it seems of Elijah wood having sex with a hooker and seemingly unimpressed and barely noticing. That scene at first seems random but actually sets the mood for the film and his character. Making sure that we know this film won't be thrilling, but very low-key and dry.

This film feels like a fairly typical comedic crime caper thriller. That actually has stakes and repercussions. the film is more comedic at least in the first half. Then in the second half turns not only more violent, but surprisingly more tense. Luckily the situations aren't convenient they are earned.

Though the film is filtered with cynicism. What truly makes the film come alive is Nicolas Cage's energetic, live wire performance. At once quirky, dangerous yet usually hilarious. This is another film that is highlighted by his presence and performance that goes above and beyond the material. It's nothing we haven't seen before, but here it feels off kilter and a little more subtle.

Elijah Wood's performance is more like the film. Low-key until the third act. where he becomes more vital and seems to be the moral center and clear thinker. Whose character gets more interesting as the film goes along and stops being as slow.

Though the film offers some twists and turns. Some are more predictable then others. The film succeeds in having the audience over think and suspect at times. When things are rather straight and narrow.

The writers found that setting a gritty cop story in Las Vegas actually worked well, by taking advantage of the contrast between the glitz of the Vegas Strip and the seedier neighborhoods nearby.

As more destruction occurs in the film. You kind of feel sorry the characters. As their history is never fully explained but in a sense felt and hinted at. At least through behavior and clues. We somewhat get the gist of them and understand the more sad sack loves of the characters that would inspire such a plan.

The film has s respectable known cast playing more small supporting roles, but at least you understand why they were cast. As each means something to the film in the long run.

Jerry Lewis joined the project at the insistence of Nicolas Cage; the two have been friends for years. Lewis, however, has less than one minute of screen time.

Unfortunately the film offers nothing new to the formula. So it comes off as typical, but it's a film where you wish you could spend more time with the characters of that film. Had more for them to do so that their movie adventures could go on.

It’s a film that you continuously keep waiting for it to start or at least go somewhere to make the whole endeavor worth it. It almost achieves it. The film isn't a necessarily a strong debut for the directors, but a respectable one. Who knows what they could have done with a bigger budget. Not that they needed one. As there are a few visual flourishes here. Not bad for the director’s debut. It's a good little time waster.


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