The Counselor FeaturedWritten by Jon Patch
20th Century Fox, Scott Free Productions and Chockstone Pictures present a 117 minute, R rated, crime, drama, thriller, directed by Ridley Scott and written by Cormac McCarthy with a theater release date of October 25, 2013.
Reiner (Javier Bardem) and his controlling girlfriend Malkina (Cameron Diaz) are involved in a 20 million dollar drug traffic ring out of Mexico. Hidden within the septic tanks filed with waste and headed for America is millions worth of drugs. Reiner is a very wealthy man with businesses located throughout his town, a mansion, nice cars and two beautiful Cheetahs as pets. Not a big fan with the message behind the Cheetahs, exotics should never be kept as pets and the depiction of these beautiful but dangerous cats send the wrong message to viewers that may see this film. Even in Mexico the drug cartel surrounds themselves with cliché dog breeds once again making these canines out to look like bad breeds to the public.
In Amsterdam, Counselor (Michael Fassbender) is picking out a 3.9 carat diamond for his girlfriend Laura (Penelope Cruz) as he plans to propose to her at Reiner’s Grille with his words that he intends to love her until he dies. Hence she responds unless she dies first! Reiner’s advice to Counselor is that the truth about women is that you can do anything to them but just don’t bore them. Something Counselor does not do with Laura but rather after he decides to get involved with Reiner in serious crime he in turn puts his life and hers in danger. Soon thereafter Counselor meets Westray (Brad Pitt), the middle man, advisor, who happens to keep it real with Counselor about the potential downfalls of getting involved in the drug world.
All goes bad for Counselor and the others when a client named Ruth (Rosie Perez) he represents at the Texas State Penitentiary asks him to help her son get out of jail for a speeding ticket he received on his way to see her. It turns out that the world is much smaller than one thinks and that one person’s actions can truly affect the outcome of others and the choices they make in life. In the end, extinction of all reality brings death and by all means the world can always depend on American’s to try and do the right thing.
The film was all over the place and at times very difficult to follow. Too long for sure which doesn’t help its cause since the entire film is tall on story and short on any action which creates a bit of a yawn for almost two hours. There is some nice cinematography in the film but the direction is very confusing and the story line doesn’t help the situation at all. As for character development it seems to be lost within the philosophical writing which at times is interesting in an odd Shakespearean manner if that makes any sense. Well the film really doesn’t so why should I! Either way I far from enjoyed this snoozer of a cliché no action non-thrill ride of a crime drama.
Now for the worst part, even though it had a great cast they were all horrible. What happened to them? Was it the direction, the writing or just a bad ensemble? Fassbender at least does justice to his role that is if he would stop crying for a moment to grow a set of balls and fight back for what he wants or at least deserves. Cruz was one of the best parts of the story but was only given a very small amount of time on screen. I totally believe she should have switched roles with Diaz since Diaz was absolutely non-believable and just plain horrible in her role. Bardem is usually entertaining at least and once again gives a little something here but very far from his usual expertise. Pitt not only looks tired and rough but once again as I thought he did in “World War Z” gives a dying performance not worthy of a leading role. As for some cameos and other supporting characters I personally don’t think anything would help this story other than a total re-casting of the lead characters, better direction and a more intriguing script. In the end, Ridley Scott adds his potential life changing philosophy to this film but far from enough to make a difference and make this a must see film. Written and bored with 1 paw out of four by Jon Patch.
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