Sunday, November 3, 2013

The Counselor

Starring: Michael Fassbender, Cameron Diaz, Javier Bardem, Penelope Cruz, Brad Pitt
Director: Ridley Scott
Running Time: R
Rating: 1 hour, 57 minutes

Put Michael Fassbender, Brad Pitt, Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz in a film and every woman on Earth is happy. Unfortunately, these beautiful all-stars couldn’t save this sorry excuse for a film. Loose beginnings and loose endings really don’t leave you much to contemplate. If you ask me where it went wrong, it was when "The Counselor" started. I sat there the entire 117 minutes wondering what exactly the point was, and it’s never really addressed. All talk and very little action make for a really poor movie.

Ridley Scott is known for making long movies, and Cormac McCarthy is a pro at writing obscure scripts with long scenes and lots of dialogue (see "Robin Hood" and  "No Country for Old Men," respectively). Combine the two men, and it’s a recipe for disaster. The casting is the only saving grace of the film, except for Cameron Diaz. She just isn’t quite the badass broad her character is supposed to be. Angelina Jolie, someone with easy sex appeal AND bad bitch-dom would have been stronger here. I won’t get the ridiculous car scene with Diaz out of my mind anytime soon, though. You don’t want to watch this with your parents.

Michael Fassbender is just yum. He isn’t given a name other than “the Counselor” during the entire film. He embarks into the world of drugs and the Cartel, but before he can get his foot in the door, a coincidence paints him in a very bad lighting – not good when you’re dealing with the Cartel. This is just begging to be a little more like “Savages,” but you never get any of the heart-pounding action and suspense.

Westray (Pitt) and Reiner (Bardem) are in the Counselor’s drug ring, with Bardem’s character looking especially wiggity-whack. The beautiful Cruz is phenomenal as Laura, the Counselor’s naïve and concerned fiancée. John Leguizamo has a terrific cameo, but don’t blink.

The only thing I got out of this film is all the eye candy and two terrific lines. Westray tells the Counselor "you don’t really know someone until you know what they want" (universal truth), and the Counselor tells Laura “being in bed with you is life, everything else is just waiting.” Swoon. But seriously, don’t waste your time on this one.

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