Shoot ‘Em Up
Directed by Michael Davis
Starring Clive Owen, Paul Giamatti, Monica Bellucci
New Line Home Video
Available Jan. 1, 2008
Talk about shooting your load. — Clive Owen, Shoot ‘Em Up
NOTE: I’ve been obligated to write this review since the middle of August. Due to Shoot ‘Em Up being rated R, and being that I’m underage, and being that it was playing at a theater that I couldn’t sneak into, I missed one hell of a time. So… umm… sorry Dave and Eve…
There comes a time in all of our lives when we see something that doesn’t look the least bit realistic. This year alone, I had the opportunity to watch Bruce Willis ride on a fighter plane, a stripper with a gun for a leg kill zombies, and Britney Spears performing at the VMAs once again, and I didn’t believe a single bit of it. Nonetheless, I enjoyed myself. I had fun with each and every one of them, and I was in one hell of a mood that could have turned a drunk sober.
But why do I bring them up in a review for a completely different thing? Well, looky here and learn something. These past few days I’ve been waiting anxiously for two things — a Chik-Fil-A sandwich and the Shoot ‘Em Up DVD. I got my Chik-Fil-A sandwich last Friday and this lucky bastard got two of them, and he was as giddy as Lindsay Lohan receiving a bottle of Jack Daniels in her Christmas stocking. A week later, I received Shoot ‘Em Up. Now what can’t you like about a film with a line-up like this and a trailer like the ones that you’ve seen on TV?
I’ve been waiting for your answer. Guess you’re clueless.
But yes, it’s true about what you have heard about Shoot ‘Em Up. It has everything that an action fan would want. It has guns, Clive Owen, sex, boobies, and more guns… better yet, lots and lots of guns. There are one-liners fired off faster than knuckle-children. Last year’s Crank couldn’t even keep up with a film like this. The one scene where Jason Statham’s character was schplotzing Amy Smart in China-Town couldn’t compete with the scene where Clive Owen schplotzes Monica Bellucci. This movie will make you schplotz yourself.
It’s a dark night, and a man eating a carrot (Clive Owen, or God’s son) is sitting at a bus stop. This man’s name is Mr. Smith, and little does he know, a pregnant lady (Ramona Pringle) will be running by him while being chased by guys with guns. Smith follows them into a dark alleyway, and Smith stabs the guy in the brain with his carrot… I’m not exaggerating that one bit… and you can expect what’s going on from there. I refuse to say anything else.
Shoot ‘Em Up is the easiest film that you can push around like a little kid in the school-ground. It has all action and no plot. When you think it has plot, it turns out that it is one of those films that like to tease you. Many of the scenes here are unbelievable and are about as fake as the tits on the chick at the mall. Remember that one scene in Live Free or Die Hard, when Willis tries to take down that fighter plane? Well, it’s mimicked here, as Clive Owen’s character shoots guys in mid-air.
The point of Shoot ‘Em Up is that you have to let go of the thought of reality for a little while and play dumb. Normally, I don’t like to say it because you really shouldn’t be dumb to enjoy a movie, but this is one of those times where if you don’t play dumb, you won’t enjoy it. You must remember that this is someone else’s world. It can be the one that you dream that you live in or it can be the one that the person next to you lives in. In this world, you can stab people with carrots and kill them, and in this world, you can schplotz and shoot guns. It’s the world that we all wish to live in, and it’s the world that we cannot live without.
But then again, maybe I’m missing the point of Shoot ‘Em Up. Maybe it’s supposed to be a satirical take on the action genre. When the plot twists start to become ridiculous, is it that Shoot ‘Em Up thinks it’s an action film, or is the director of Shoot ‘Em Up, Mike Davis, trying to remind us why ridiculous plot twists are ridiculous for a reason? And then our hero, Mr. Smith. That might not even be his real name. Sometime through the movie, Mr. Hertz claims to know what his real name is, but we never know what it is. About Mr. Hertz, he recites limericks and throws one-liners like the usual action movie villain. This is a sillier version of Hot Fuzz, goddamnit… and I LIKE it.
Yeah, it’s a lot like those Bugs Bunny-Elmer Fudd cartoons, and it knows that it is. It’s just as silly and just as absurd as one. An innocent guy is at the wrong place at the wrong time, but the villains are people that are as dumb as a doorknob. Don’t believe me?
Mr. Smith: What’s up doc?
Mr. Hertz: You wascally wabbit.
The movie is wonderfully led by Clive Owen. Everyone in the reviewing world knows who that is, but everyone who is just a moviegoer considers him as “that guy.” Before this film, he was George Clooney without the charisma and charm. Now, he’s a household name, soon to be permanently implanted in everyone’s mind. Then there is Paul Giamatti, who already knows that he can hold a movie by himself, but wants to prove it again in his best villainous role since Big Fat Liar. Everyone else but Monica Bellucci is dinner for Owen’s ass.
Shoot ‘Em Up is the single most awesomest action movie that I have seen ALL year. Times like this, it reminds me why I always have an extra pair of pants when I watch a movie like this. You might need a change, because this is your wet dream.
**** out of ****