Just got done giving this a re watch and I can honestly say its one of my favs of 2006. It was pretty much panned by film critics & audiences (and bombed at the box office) but damn it I loved it so much and will defend this Michael Mann film! haha
What I most like about it is how gritty Mann made it. This is a no non sense film with very little comedy in it. I think a lot of film goers were looking for a "buddy cop" film that cracked jokes all the time thru out it (like the reboots of Starsky &Hutch and Dukes of Hazard ) . Mann didn't fuck around here. Farrell & Foxx played it straight and gave very serious performances that were really good imo . It was well shot, supporting cast was aces , soundtrack was on point and the whole criminal under world story was fascinating to me.
Post by urbanpatrician on May 13, 2018 6:49:40 GMT
I loved it even back in 2006. I called it the best film of the year, and everyone gave me shit trying to tell me that it was a shit film. I don't think anyone will tell me that now. What else was I gonna like that year anyways? The Departed? Babel? The Fountain? (though I liked it when it came out) There wasn't a lot of other choices, and I don't much care for United 93, Children of Men, Pan's Labyrinth, etc.
It kinda disappeared in the late 00s and early 10s, but it's come back, and in the last 3 years I think there's a substantial enough amount of discussion around it on Film General. Not that it's talked about everyday, but there is occasionally some talk about it - more than you would expect for a film that was mixed reviewed. It doesn't generate half as much as love as Heat. But I don't think there's a trend anymore around it that it's regularly hated. A few individual users, but for the most part.... there's more of a trend around it as to how underrated it is.
This has a huge following with "experienced critics." Ones who see about 350 films a year from all over the globe. Ones who have a letterbox'd of 4000 films seen. For some reason, it appeals to film-buffy critics (i.e. the Slant types). Maybe most of that is the Mann bias, but everytime I log-on to letterbox'd I see reviews from it from people who likes really obscure modern Asian shit and minimally discussed independent filmmakers, and I'm still trying to figure that out. I think there needs to be more love from old-school Mann boys, but recently they've come around on it to.... a little bit, kinda. Though outside Film Socialism and moonman, I'll still trying to find out who else really liked it.
But anyways.... this is #1 or #2 favorite film of the year. Maybe I'd adjust the middle a little (started out and ended sublime) but I'd adjust some of the Gong and Farrell apart scenes. Mann's vision of the digital age remains as strong even 12 years later and it hasn't aged a day for me.
It's a pretty good film, some dazzling sequences - not one of Mann's great ones but I'd rank it as underrated and comparable to the good but overrated Collateral; they're his entertaining, but not really flirting with true greatness ones to me.
It's one of those weird movies, underrated on its release by people looking at the directors whole career but also it's overrated later by some people who are trying to find his "most underrated" (but that's Public Enemies to me......)
I'd argue the TV show is remembered incorrectly by some people - particularly the first couple seasons - where it was much better than people think. Usually when Mann is (was?) in peak form, he's in peak form for his scriptwriting, when his scripts lag, he tries to overcompensate in his directing...........but writing is his strength and in Miami Vice the film, it's all over the place.
Post by theycallmemrfish on May 18, 2018 2:20:49 GMT
All the "best of" stuff is making me shake my fists violently at the screen.
That said, it's solid. There was a lot that was good and quite a bit that was bad. I think with all the things going on (too many for the 130 minute film), it could have been a really great season of television... but as it stands, it's just a solid movie.
Post by urbanpatrician on Aug 13, 2019 10:31:15 GMT
Just rewatched this. Good to get the feel of this again. Such a pulsating film, and it feels like such an alternate world view. I feel like it's as good as it can get. I feel like this is Mann's most intimate film. Maybe that's the one aspect that stands out about it. The grit and energy had me engaged every second.
Just like to give a shoutout. Gina is the coolest back-up cop ever portrayed. One subtle aspect that gets overlooked. She's so sharp, and her running around with guns is a great image which captures the essence of the film. It's a shame Mann never worked with that actress again, as I know he has lots of recurring actors in his films. But him being such a difficult on-schedule film producer probably shut the door down on many things he could've done this decade.
Naomie Harris.... such a great performance as the petite love interest, she's miles better here than whatever the fuck she was nominated an Oscar for.
My only gripe is Gong Li. I know most of you won't agree, but I never saw her as romantic. I think the scenes she shines in were in the end when she gets mad at Sonny for lying to her. She's good at flipping out, and getting mad at you in the name of love and she portrays sadness, goodbye, and longing very well. But those romance scenes earlier in the film fell a bit flat. This is my imaginings, but I wish Tang Wei was around in 2006. She was in his film 10 years later, but I feel like Tang's personality is more uppity and courtable, and would look more believable as an object of courtship. And during those Havana/let's celebrate the deal scenes, I feel like Tang's more uppity and more flirtatious personality would fit the film better. Those Havana/we've just made a deal scenes would've been like no other - in reverberating the image of love and crime.
Post by paranoidroegian on Aug 15, 2019 1:04:06 GMT
All of the layers of performance going on really gets into murky territory, but it's by design. The cinematography is near-perfect, and the way Mann interweaves themes feels almost scarily ahead of its time. A great movie to show people if they want the action genre almost completely subverted.
14 years later, and it's still the most underrated movie. Only a handful of people get it, although they are increasing in number so that's good.
Should be an entire meme culture devoted to replicating the poetry of this movie. Deserves the reputation of Children of Men and The Departed. While everyone was smoking dope on those 2 in 2006, I was laying low liking Mann's rightfully superior film. Still hasn't changed.