Well what do we have here? Denzel and Marky Mark think they’re men enough to take on the financially successful Smurfs in their second big-screen outing? This should prove a mighty challenge. Everyone should know by now that you don’t Smurf with the Smurfs…
I’m sorry about that. I really am. I just committed a sin, considering how much I’m about to hate on the Smurfs for doing the exact same thing.
Stig (Marky Mark) and Bobby (Denzel Washington) seem to be partners in crime. They run drug money and rob banks in their spare time. Though, neither one knows that the other is an undercover agent working for the “right” side of the law. This all comes to a disastrous head as they literally get more than they bargain for in a bank robbery. Soon, they must form another shaky alliance as they are sought by Mexican drug cartels, military rouges and the CIA. The men that represent the bad organizations are Commander Adama, Cyclops and Bill Pullman/Paxton.
First of all, let me say that it’s pretty sad about Tony Scott passing away last year. This movie felt like it was meant for his direction. Who knows, maybe he could have added some necessary flair to the experience.
I was immediately surprised with Wahlberg’s performance. He was on his “A game” as a cocky loose cannon. For the first ten minutes you actually can’t get enough of the humor he provides. On first impression, this movie was looking to be incredibly fun. 2 Guns sets the bar high in the beginning, but sadly loses all steam for the duration of the run time.
The light-hearted atmosphere of the movie disappears completely and it takes itself far too seriously. With every character you meet, it’s not a question of “will they betray Stig and Bobby?” but “WHEN will they betray Stig and Bobby?” While it may sound interesting that 2 men are fighting a bevy of powerful organizations, instead you lose track and start to wonder who to root for or if you even care.
That’s not to say this movie is unwatchable. It’s watchable, but just gets a little tiresome. It was great to see Bill Paxton as a sinister CIA interrogator. I kept hoping his character would show up more, but he disappeared for 30 minutes at a time. Also, how can you not love Edward James Olmos? Even when he is the head of a barbaric cartel, you still want to adopt him as your grandpa. (No one else?) Wahlberg also has one of the greatest insults of the year by saying that Olmos reminds him of a “Mexican Albert Einstein.” That one actually got a gut laugh.
In the midst of betrayal and gunfire, there is a climactic Mexican stand-off that pits every organization against each other. It gets big and loud and the movie starts to find its feet again. Washington and Wahlberg start to have fun with each other again, but it’s too little and too late.
2 Guns is worth renting. The laughs you’ll get are worth the Redbox rental. Though, after watching the movie, you’ll just wish it was as strong and as fun as it could have been.
The Smurfs 2
To summarize my experience of watching Smurfs 2, let me use direct quotes from the movie.
“If you weren’t in excruciating pain, you’d be laughing hysterically.”
“Every time a Smurf toots, someone smiles.”
These two quotes encapsulate everything about this movie. I’ll explain after the plot.
Smurfette is captured by Gargamel’s (Hank Azaria) new creations, the Naughties. Originally a creation of Gargamel herself, she struggles with the purpose she was created for, and being a part of the loving Smurf community that adopted her as one of their own. Gargamel, it seems, is an international superstar and is currently performing sold-out magic shows in Paris. He wants Smurfette to give him the secret formula so he can make every evil Naughty blue. Gargamel is apparently only magic because he extracts Smurf essence from blue Smurfs. The Smurfs (Doc, Clumsy, Vanity and George Lopez) jump through the Pacific Rim to reunite with Neil Patrick Harris so they can rescue Smurfette.
Wow, I spent far too much time explaining that plot. Here’s all you need to know. Gargamel hams it up, Smurfette thinks about turning bad in a series of montages and Neil Patrick Harris destroys another piece of his soul.
I expected this movie to be horrendous and it didn’t let me down. But I was incredibly disappointed that Brendan Gleeson (28 Days Later, In Bruges) plays Doogie’s overbearing step-dad. This movie is all about daddy issues.
I wrote down a list of every Smurf “pun” used in the movie as a drinking game of sorts. Instead of taking shots, I facepalmed in embarrassment every time one of these were used.
I know I’m not the target market for this movie. So I brought my 4 year old daughter with me. She likes pretty much every show she sees (except Caillou, no one likes Caillou). Instead of laughing her guts out and spilling popcorn all over the floor, she rested her head on the seat rest and waited the movie out. As we walked out I asked her if she liked it and she said “….good….but BORING!” There you go. This mind-numbingly poor excuse for a movie can’t even keep kids entertained!
Skip this one for the love of all that you consider holy. Don’t pump money into lazy ideas. Please keep your kids’ eyes free from viewing this Smurf-smut! Who am I kidding? Much like Grown Ups 2, this abomination will make money and there will be Smurfs 3 in 2015.
In closing, let me express my thoughts about the movie finally ending through another Smurfs 2 quote. “Is this what happy feels like?”