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Frank (Willis) is a former black-ops CIA agent living a quiet life alone... until the day a hit squad shows up to kill him. With his identity compromised, Frank reassembles his old team Joe (Freeman), Marvin (Malkovich) and Victoria (Mirren) and sets out to prove that they still have a few tricks up their sleeves. Stand back and watch the bullets fly in this explosive action-comedy that critics call a rip-roaring good time.
DVD Features Deleted and Extended Scenes; Access Red: Immersive 6-part interactive feature including pop up trivia, videos, interviews and more!; Audio commentary w/ retired CIA field agent Robert Baer
RED is the action-comedy about a small group of retired CIA field operatives (Retired, Extremely Dangerous...R.E.D.) who are targeted for elimination by nefarious government groups and must team up to fight off the threat and reveal the culprit.
RED is a silly but very fun movie. It is the sort of movie that would not work, however, if we didn't already have pretty strong impressions and feelings about its stars. If we didn't already think of Helen Mirren as the classy actress who won an Oscar for THE QUEEN...we wouldn't laugh simply at the sight of her wielding a machine gun. If we didn't mostly think of Morgan Freeman for playing God or the President or the silky-toned narrator of MARCH OF THE PENGUINS...we wouldn't chuckle at his antics. Quite frankly, if you enjoyed the trailers for RED, you'll enjoy the movie. They give you an almost complete sense of the tone of this film. If you thought the trailers looked merely silly and made you roll your eyes...then the movie will simply multiply that feeling.
Personally, I thought it was a lot of fun. The actors are clearly having a ball, and Bruce Willis (who doesn't really come across as old enough to be retired...especially when he can still win fistfights left and right) makes a good host. He's coasting here, but as movie-goers, we're so comfortable with Willis and his shaved head that it feels a little like we're just visiting an old friend. Mary Louise Parker (WEEDS) is his sort-of love interest, a call center worker he's been flirting with long distance but who now joins in on the escapades. She does a nice job evolving from meek to really enjoying the dangerous antics. Mirren and Freeman are fun. Brian Cox shows up as a retired Soviet agent, and he sparkles in his over-the-top accent. Richard Dreyfuss appears in a couple of scenes and chews scenery. You have to almost feel sorry for Karl Urban as the assassin on Willis' trail...he doesn't get to have much fun...but he acquits himself well. I can almost envision him doing well as the star of a straight-laced action series on CBS.
Best of all is the hilarious John Malkovich. He steals every scene he's in with amazing ease. As the craziest of the REDs, he gets to let his tendencies to overact mightily just run wild...and it all works. His facial expressions alone had the audience in stitches.
RED is not a classic film by any means. But I must say, the 110 minutes I spent with these guys was a complete, guilty-pleasure blast. Maybe I'm just the right age (46) to enjoy this particular cast goofing around...but I sure noticed a lot of happy looking teens and 20-somethings all around me. I think this film is set up to be a nice little hit (with room for sequels).
I mean, anything that features Dame Mirren, an elegant evening gown, and a .50 cal machine gun can't be all bad. Once you stop taking it seriously (something sure to happen early on), it's a riot.
The basic message is a boomer ego-stroke: "Don't mess with the old guys." Unfortunately, that's what happens. Retired CIA agents start dying at an alarming rate. It turns out that the decedents all worked on the one particular mission - one that Our Heroes worked on as well. So, when the hit men come after the hit men, the chase is on. And, as it progresses it reaches higher and higher into the halls of government. You know, the usual.
In this movie, the fun is all in getting there. Bruce Willis's wise-cracking plays well against John Malkovich's slightly deranged character, Morgan Freeman's easy-going character balances them both, and Helen Mirren adds a touch of class. Then there's Mary-Louise Parker's character, Sarah, in a role like Diaz's in Knight and Day only not as ridiculous. Keep your ears open for the one-liners. There were enough times I was the only one in the theater laughing that I might have been the only one listening, too.
OK, maybe this isn't one for the ages. It's a heck of a way to spend a Saturday night, though.
- Lots of action. Even though Bruce Willis is playing an older, retired guy, he's still got the goods. He's completely convincing. The rest of the cast delivers as well.
- Funny moments - While it's not a continual thing, there are plenty of funny and light moments, with a few of laugh out louds. Willis is the master of action flick funny, and John Malkovich was surprisingly hilarious. The rest of the cast contributed well as straight guys.
- Romance - Bruce Willis and Mary-Louise Parker really work. I don't want to ruin any surprises, but lets say it starts out and ends in a surprising way, and they had good chemistry.
- Character development - Surprisingly well done for an action flick. Each character was really defined, and you get to care about them.
- Suspense - It was really a good story, and well written. It was full of twists and surprises, with plenty of "edge of your seat" moments.
- Outstanding cast - The star power in this movie was blinding. These people really shined. They're not stars for nothing. Each person was fantastic in their role.
The beginning of the movie dragged just a bit, but once it took off, it really flew.
It was a really enjoyable movie. We recommend this movie highly, however please don't bring your young kids as one family in the theater did. There's too much violence for children.
October 2010. If movies about social networking sites and mishmashes are what passes for "A truly cinematic experience" nowadays, I guess you could count me out. That is, until I noticed that a movie I never saw any trailers for, and full of stars, called RED was out. Easily taken in before I read anything about its plot, I went and saw it. That blind watch I'm definitely proud of!
RED is cliched in terms of story- a retired agent has his house destroyed by a secret agency and makes for the next state, picking up some friends along the way in an all-out, over-the-top action adventure. But as cliche as it is, RED is also just fun. We have Morgan Freeman, Bruce Willis (in the tough guy role as usual), the chick from Weeds, Helen Mirren- all are fantastic. There's plenty of over-the-top action that's fun, it's hilarious, and overall it's a fun movie if all you ask for is just some pure escapist fun.
In the end, RED is definitely not art or Oscar material, but it is one of the most fun movies of 2010, and recommended for some pure entertainment!