Archives for posts with tag: Benicio Del Toro

I presume Alejandro González Iñárritu was trying to make an artistic statement about the randomness of life by scrambling the timeline in “21 Grams” (2003), but it just didn’t work for me. Maybe it was punishment for my habit of trying to guess what’s going to happen next – it’s hard when next isn’t really next. Usually these kinds of movies sort themselves out and you can catch on. But in this unsatisfying rendition, where three families cross paths at a tragically metaphorical intersection, I was still stuck at the stoplight, blinker on, trying to figure out which way to turn.

“Sicario” (2015) is a cross between “Syriana” and “Man on Fire,” except “Syriana” had the idea first and “Man on Fire” is more poetic. The idea? America’s amorality in wielding its power is the reason all these poor, unwashed countries are such a pain in the ass to deal with. This one focuses on the drug trade in general and Mexico in particular. It really pisses me off when filmmakers act like America invented imperialism. Note to Denis Villenueve: History didn’t begin when you slid out of the womb. Still, those are two pretty good movies to be compared to.


Take the dude from “Taxi Driver” and make him a middle-aged knife salesman with a passion for the San Francisco Giants and their star player. Now make the plot as implausible as humanly possible. Out of the hundreds of people I know in professional baseball, not a single one likes “The Fan” (1996). And we’re talking about a film with De Niro, Snipes, Barkin, Del Toro, Leguizamo and, um, Kruk. The friction between fans who take things too seriously and players who don’t take things seriously enough should make a great story. Instead, it strikes out. Just like that pun.