Arts in Review

Film Review: RED

This fall season has seen a string of blockbusters hitting theatres. One of the most recent is RED, an action-comedy film, based on a three-issue comic book limited series of the same name. The all-star cast includes Bruce Willis, Mary-Louise Parker, Morgan Freeman, Helen Mirren, John Malkovich, Karl Urban and a surprise cameo from Richard Dreyfuss. The film itself is surprisingly hilarious and full of gun firing action.

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by Brittany Wiesner (Staff Writer)

This fall season has seen a string of blockbusters hitting theatres. One of the most recent is RED, an action-comedy film, based on a three-issue comic book limited series of the same name. The all-star cast includes Bruce Willis, Mary-Louise Parker, Morgan Freeman, Helen Mirren, John Malkovich, Karl Urban and a surprise cameo from Richard Dreyfuss. The film itself is surprisingly hilarious and full of gun firing action.

With so many big names in the film you’d think egos would collide, but the cast worked well together – as if they really were old friends. The plot revolves around Bruce Willis, who plays Frank Moses, a retired black-ops CIA agent (hence “RED,” which stands for retired, extremely dangerous). Moses, upon forming a relationship with a pension customer service agent, Sarah, played by Mary-Louise Parker, gets targeted for assassination. A journey to find his old team-mates ensues, including Morgan Freeman, who’s in a retirement home, John Malkovich, who’s gone slightly crazy and Helen Mirren, who’s living a life of luxury. While the five of them try to stop the bad guys and save their own lives, the villain of the film, Karl Urban, is hot on their trails.

The film is cliché action; the good guys go through hardships, bond, make tough choices etc, and the bad guys are always one step away from catching them. In the end everything’s wrapped up in a nice little bow. It even has a nice twist in it to keep the audience on their toes. One thing that it had that wasn’t expected was hilarity. The comedic one-liners were timed perfectly, and the faces John Malkovich made were priceless. It was hard to get through a scene without laughing. Many Weeds fans will be sorry to hear we don’t see May-Louise Parker naked, but there is enough action to make up for that fact.

The appearance of Richard Dreyfuss was a complete surprise, considering he’s a big Hollywood name who wasn’t advertised much. His character has an interesting twist, and he plays the part well. Bruce Willis, sadly, plays the same character he always does in action films. Lately he seems to have been type-cast, or he has been for his whole career, only it’s more noticeable recently. Morgan Freeman however is his same old wise self (no pun intended), and, while he plays the same role he has in the past, he does it well, and it’s what everyone likes. Helen Mirren is of course the same excellent, bad-ass women she always has been.

Overall, the movie is hilarious and action packed. Though at times predictable and a bit over the top, it’s a still great stay-in-Friday-night-flick, something you can rent and watch with your family or friends. But probably not something you’ll want to rush and see in theatres. Or maybe, if you’re brave, you’ll want to try the graphic novels first.

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