Customer Rating: Summary: A love-hate movie that I loved Comment: "Shoot 'Em Up" is a straight-faced over-the-top parody of the action movie genre. Profoundly silly one-liners after shooting a guy? Check. No backstory about our cookie-cutter characters? Got it. An overly convoluted plot that makes no sense at all? Yep. The ability of the hero to run away from 10 guys shooting at him a close range? Check. And stunts that would kill a regular human being 10 times over, from which the hero walks away? About every 5 minutes.
Where most action movies present these elements and expect us to swallow them, "Shoot 'Em Up" goes so far over the top that it flings those elements, and others, right in the audience's face as part of its bone-dry parody. I think that's why this movie is so polarizing - whether you like this kind of thing is a matter of taste. For example, whether you find a pro-gun-control gunfighting hero to be head-scratching or funny as heck will depend completely on your sense of humor.
For this film to work, Owen and Giamatti had to own their characters completely, as ridiculous as they were, and they definitely did so. The pace has to keep moving so you don't stop and think about the details too much, and it certainly did. At 90 minutes, this film is just long enough.
The irony is that "Shoot 'Em Up," even as a parody of the genre, is a superior example of the genre. It's at least worth a rent, particularly if you have Blu-Ray - the Blu-Ray transfer is fantastic. Customer Rating: Summary: Paul Giamatti Steals the Show! Comment: This is a stylized action-thriller with an improbable plot (much like Crank or The Transporter). This movie starts out with action and doesn't let up until the end. If you enjoy the low on plot high on entertainment value film genre then this is for you. Paul Giamatti is a special treat with great lines throughout the movie and a memorable character. Customer Rating: Summary: Got Milk? Got Carrots? Comment: The first time I watched this film I didn't like it very much. It held my interest, but I didn't care for the wafer-thin plot. And those are diet wafers. But I watched it again with the audio commentary by writer/director Michael Davis. He pointed out some of the elements that I had missed, and my interest picked up.
The jerry-rigged plot has Mr. Smith (ably portrayed by Clive Owen) injecting himself into a conspiracy to murder a very pregnant woman. Hordes of heavily armed bad guys are hunting her. Smith ends up caring for her newborn child. The movie becomes a series of gunfights in which some 130 (according to the commentary) bad guys fall to Smith's super-sharp shooting. The gun battles contain elements drawn from James Bond, Dirty Harry, Lethal Weapon, and the countless other flicks that feature a good guy who can shoot taking on legions of bad guys who can't. On top of this, Davis makes it all surreal by developing fantastic scenarios with a Rube Goldberg twist.
The stunning Monica Bellucci adds a certain ... warmth as she plays a lactating prostitute who really cares. She proves with Mr.Smith that people can attain a satisfying climax under the most trying conditions. Paul Giamatti is the heavy (Hertz) who reminds me of Orson Welles gone to seed.
There are some disgusting elements like a graphic depiction of what could happen when a gun falls into a filthy toilet and Hertz's "interaction" with a corpse.
In my opinion, if you take away a few disgusting scenes and tighten up the plot, this becomes a great movie.
Customer Rating: Summary: Mchstokes Rewiew Comment: This was an exciting movie from start to finish. It really was a shoot them up Customer Rating: Summary: Shooting Blanks Comment: If this is supposed to be a homage to the Hong Kong action genre then John Woo should feel a little slighted. This flick is of little discernible style and no substance. The over-the-top action is boring, the plot is convoluted, and the constant stabs at humor drop like a thud. The usually dependable Clive Owen cannot even save this turkey. He has to work overtime to stave off embarrassment. But, then, Clive can pick and choose his own projects so you can't imagine what drew him to this one. Paul Giamatti lays an egg as the film's heavy. Be careful, Paul, or people will forget that you made good flicks like "American Splendor" and "Sideways". Monica Bellucci as the requisite femme fatale is the only performer here to make a visceral impact. The hilarious love-making scene between her and Owen is about the only time this film engaged me. Otherwise, this flick is a complete waste of brain cells and not in the good way that some popcorn flicks are.