Sunday, July 04, 2010
July 4, 2010 "Unthinkable"
Let's run through this one for a moment.
Samuel L. Jackson
Soldier-turned-terrorist plants 3 nukular bombs in 3 US cities. It's Monday. They are scheduled to go off at noon on Friday. Genuine tension and thrills follow.
Release: straight to DVD
hmmmm... what up wit' dat?
Apparently, the US audiences did not like two fabulous, high-production value movies ("Hurt Locker" and "Green Zone," which, by the way, make a great double feature). We just don't like knowing these things, apparently.
Don't ask, don't tell... and for pity's sake, don't make a movie about it and put in stars we like to see. Indeed. Just get the job done.
"Unthinkable" is not a Tom Clancy novel. There is no Jack Ryan. The production values are low (I think they rented out a high school, not that it was not an effective choice). No chases. No special effects. No Air Force One barreling down the runway as the ash cloud nips its tail. No press conferences. No somber news conference from the Oval Office.
They catch the soldier-turned-terrorist and they need to get the information from him. And that is the movie. If you recall the scenes of information-extracting from (that great TV show) "Alias" then you really have seen comparable information-extracting techniques. But those, of course, were being carried out by an evil Chinese man with a dentist's drill on our heroes! That you can show on TV, because we (flags wave, anthems play) can overcome great eeeevil!!!!
But what if the guy with the drill is Samuel L. Jackson, family man, and the prisoner in the chair is a US citizen?
What are the rights... the morality... when nuking 3 US cities is on the line?
Apparently, asking this interesting question does not mix well with the super-tub of popcorn, the big blue Icee drink, and a box of Goobers at the Bijou.
Just slide that baby onto DVD and hope to get some of the money back. WTF were we thinking? Making a movie about an idea.
And to make matters even more interesting, the DVD has the "original version" (the one planned for US release) and the "extended version" (the one planned for the rest of the world). The difference is 90 seconds, and it's how you end the story.
Consider this my Independence Day 2010 Movie recommendation.
"Unthinkable" is available from Amazon.