I saw "Red" this week with high hopes for a great action comedy, instead it was cheesy and boring with little action or comedy. Here is why it should have been a better film.
1. The cast - I am not usually a big Bruce Willis fan, but I do enjoy him as an action star. I appreciated that he was still cast as an action star (albeit an aging one). The real attraction of the film for me was the 2 female stars - Helen Mirren & Mary Louise Parker. Helen Mirren as a gun toting assassin? Count me in! Come on...that is pure genius casting. I just wish she did a little bit more then carry a big gun. MLP didn't really get much to do except scream a lot and nag a lot (2 female traits that I loathe in films). One can never really go wrong with Morgan Freeman - but again, he wasn't given much to do but remind us of how old he is. It was disappointing that a cast like this wasn't utilized to their full potential. The only 2 people who made the film worth watching were John Malkovich (basically stole the spotlight through out the whole film) and Karl Urban (who is hardly a newcomer in the film industry - but I have honestly never noticed him until now) - he did a great job as the "bad guy/good guy".
2. The potential - The plot is actually sort of original (!!) - it's an action film with old people! Plus, it actually asks the question of what happens to all of these CIA heroes once they retire. How do they go on living a "normal" life after experiencing such an action packed life style. How did this film not kick ass? I guess my biggest complaint would be the writing (besides the creative plot, the dialogue was far from witty) and the directing (the action was almost non-existent, aside from one great fight scene - the rest of the action was just blowing up people).
3. The love story - Why on earth do we need a love story in the midst of an action film? I guess we needed a reason for Bruce's character to save MLP's character, but I think in general her character sucked. It would have been much better if she played a retired agent as well (not because she is old, but maybe she has some sort of injury or paperwork mishap that forces her into retirement? Maybe I should just re-write the film...). The other love story was between Mirren and Brian Cox which was to be a surprise but was extremely predicable and unnecessary.