Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Savages: Oliver Stone's Next Misfire, or A Return to Glory?


Typically, I do not like to discuss at length a film before it is released.  I may mention a film here and there, discuss anticipation, or take a look back at films directly related, but rarely do I spend a segment on an upcoming film aside from a review.  Now that I have my pointless disclaimer out of the way, I must say I am intrigued by Oliver Stone's Savages to the point of an obsessive curiosity.  And there are a number of reasons behind my piqued interest, most notably Stone's about face in his recent career path.  For several years, Stone has gone political with mediocre films like World Trade Center and W., or he has dipped back into the well with a sequel to Wall Street.  None of them have worked completely.  Savages feels like something in between Natural Born Killers and U-Turn, and that ground is anything but sturdy.  Natural Born Killers is a bit overrated in its excess, U-Turn is an unmitigated disaster.  But what if Savages finds the sweet spot?

The film, based on a novel by Don Winslow, revolves around a pair of pot growers who square off against a drug cartel when their "shared" girlfriend is kidnapped.  The premise is outlandish and something outside of what I consider to be Stone's most recent comfort zone.  But the trailer is a fascinating watch, and it has pulled me in.  the cast is strong and the energy in the two minute clip is engrossing.  But I remember feeling this way about U-Turn... and then I saw it.  I find a strange fascination with Oliver Stone when he veers off the path, and perhaps that is the reason I am looking forward to this more than any other picture this summer.  Look, I know The Dark Knight Rises, regardless of how great it may be, will be a good film.  I know nothing of how Savages will turn out.  And it hasn't been advertized very prominently as of yet, so take a look at the trailer and let me know what you think: