THOR RAGNAROK

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Knight and Day is one hell of a fun summer movie

Just went and saw the new summer movie, Knight and Day starring Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz. And I thought it was an exhilarating and fun movie. For all the doubters and naysayers who loathe Tom Cruise now for whatever reason, this movie shows why he is a true movie star. Cruise plays American super spy Roy Miller (think of Miller as a kind of off kilter Ethan Hunt, Cruise's character from the Mission Impossible films). He runs into June Haver, a restorer of classic cars (a vibrant Diaz) aboard a plane flight to Boston. The two meet cute and make small talk before things get kinda crazy. This flight happens to be full of agents who want this new energy device that Miller is trying to keep safe. So while June is freshening up in the bathroom, Miller goes ballistic on the agents in some intense and cool fight scenes. He even has to fight the pilot which leads to the next problem, flying and landing this huge 747 passenger plane without killing himself or June. This all happens in the first 20 minutes and it sets the tone for the rest of the film. After a semi successful landing, Roy explains to June what has happened and then drugs her. She wakes up the next morning back in her home like last night's events never happened.


Well, the FBI tracks her down led by the wily agent Fitzgerald (played with all smarminess by Peter Sarsgaard) who question June about Roy. They are transporting her to a safe location to debrief her when Roy literally comes flying in to land on the vehicle. That begins another wild chase and shoot-out that is cool as hell.  Roy has to shoot the bad guys from the hood of the car that June is driving down the interstate. Awesome. And it appears to be all good old fashioned stunt work and not CGI. Soon Roy and June are being chased by his own people and the bad guys who want this new technology. Oh and Roy has to keep the inventor of said device safe as well. The trio end up being whisked from a tropical island hide out to a train bound for Austria, which features a brutal fight between Roy and a would be assassin. Things get all wrapped up in Spain during the running of the bulls. Knight and Day is like a throwback to those 60's spy films with a light tone, gorgeous locations, fun filled action and a jazzy sound score. This film is not too serious like the Daniel Craig Bond films which I also love. But here Knight and Day moves wonderfully thanks to the charisma of Cruise and the charm of Diaz. It also shows that Mr. Cruise still has what it takes to handle this type of film. He can still kick ass with the best of them. I had never seen him in so may fight scenes in one film before and he's awesome. I actually like his character of Roy more than I do of his other super spy character Ethan Hunt. While Hunt is logical and straight faced, Miller is more humorous and more dangerous. And he is very good at what he does. Diaz is an engaging presence as June as she at first doesn't believe Roy but then can't leave his side. They form a solid relationship and keep the movie going at a fluid pace. We enjoyed this film from the opening scene and I can't understand all the bad reviews by critics and fans. This is what a summer film should be: exciting, fun, and showcasing the talents of a true movie star. And I love the catch phrase that Roy always says doing tense moments..."I got this". Amid all the explosions and chases, Cruise also manages to sneak in some subtle acting in the quiet scenes he spends with June. Good stuff. I actually enjoyed this more than I did The A-Team and Iron Man 2. Knight and Day actually has tons of action, more than I thought it would have. And to all the people that dislike Cruise for their own personal reasons because of his recent off-screen antics, I say forget that stuff and just look at the actor and enjoy his films while he is still making good quality work. After all this is the man who has on his resume Top Gun, Risky Business, The Firm, A Few Good Men, The Last Samurai, Collateral, Jerry Maguire just to name a few.
B+

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