By Fred Topel | Image property of respective holders.
I know we're all supposed to hate Revolver because it's been delayed for years and any sort of residual resentment for Swept Away, but I dug it. I also never held Lock, Stock and Snatch as any landmark genre pictures. They were fun, and so is Revolver.
It is a familiar story about an ex-con who sets out to settle an old score, but gets caught up in another scheme along the way. There are con games and twists and turns, but Guy Ritchie knows we know this stuff so he gets to the points quickly.
The film has a mellow rhythm setting up all the elements. Everyone looks good in suits and setting scenes to opera music or jazzy techno propel the momentum. If you're into this type of movie, you want to see it with these people. Jason Statham as the badass, Ray Liotta as the mark, Vincent Pastore as the heavy and Guy Ritchie behind the scenes.
The operations of crime schemes always fascinate me as long as they're done well. They skip a lot of the basics that we already know.
Action sequences put small twists on things. Protection actually makes one target more vulnerable to attack in one scene. Another manages to visualize the marksmanship angles of a shooter. In one, you don't see the assassin so it's half-directional. They're all imperfect and messy too.
Yeah, there's another scene where somebody falls on their own gun but at least they don't bother to show the body this time.
It has an interesting look. The tanning room is eerie and going into anime for no reason actually feels energetic.
I like the voiceover. It fills space. It actually pays off in a ridiculous but kind of cool way. Look, it's a con movie. They have voiceovers.
Revolver is not as observant as it thinks it is but it's never boring. As long as they keep the entertainment coming, it doesn't really matter if it doesn't deliver the philosophical masterpiece it wants to. Everything else works.