John Travolta and Uma Thurman are reunited
in this sequel to Get Shorty, and an adaptation of the Elmore
Leonard novel, Be Cool.
The easiest way to review this film is
in regards to Get Shorty. If you've seen it and you liked
it, there's a good chance you'll like Be Cool, too. If you
saw Get Shorty and you hated it or didn't really care, there's a
very good chance you won't like Be Cool either. It's
arguably not as good as Get Shorty, so just because you liked
Get Shorty, there's no guarantee that you'll like Be Cool.
If you haven't seen Get Shorty, here's what you need to know.
John Travolta plays Chili Palmer, a shylock who goes to Hollywood and
uses his shylocking skills to become a big time film producer.
In this movie, John Travolta plays Chili Palmer, a shylock who lives
in Hollywood and has tired of the movie industry, so he uses his
shylocking skills to become a big time record producer. So, you
see, it's totally different.
Now, some of you may not know what a shylock is. If you don't,
you may be confused because they use that term more in this film than
you've probably ever heard it used in your life. It's a loan
shark, a collector of debts; in this case, he's hired muscle that roughs
people up who don't pay. So, he's a tough guy.
There's no doubt about it: John Travolta is cool. He's
surrounded by an interesting cast of characters, including Vince Vaughn
as an oafish record executive, Uma Thurman as a sexy record executive,
Harvey Keitel as a slick record executive, The Rock as a gay bodyguard
for a record executive, Cedric the Entertainer as a wannabe thug record
executive, and James Woods as an unlucky record executive. Aside
from a number of cameos, there's also Christina Milian who plays a
recording artist (they can't all be record executives, can they?)
Everyone has their funny moments in the movie. John Travolta
has the same shtick that he had in the first film, and he does it over
and over again. In fact, his character kind of fades into the
background. The most noteworthy performances come from Vince
Vaughn and The Rock.
Noteworthy isn't necessarily good. Vince Vaughn is funny, even
though he's way over the top. The Rock gives his funniest
performance to date, although some might find his caricatures of
homosexuals to be a bit offensive (at worst) and predictable and
overdone (at best). Still, he does a decent job of getting laughs
in a comedy, which isn't an easy feat for someone known for his dramatic
Cedric the Entertainer gets a few laughs, as does his sidekick,
played by Andre 3000 (which isn't a NASCAR event, FYI). There are
a few items in the movie that some might find intellectually disturbing,
but hey...it ain't philosophy, it's Elmore Leonard.
This paragraph could potentially spoil something for you, unless
you've seen ANY ad or trailer for the film, or heard anything
about it at all. If not, then you might want to skip the rest.
The promotion of the film seems to center around a dance scene between
Uma Thurman and John Travolta. Clips of it are everywhere, and
it's a long scene in the movie. You know, Pulp Fiction
featured them dancing and it was a big hit because John Travolta hadn't
danced in a movie in years (not since Perfect, probably).
It was nice and sentimental and cool This scene, however, is
over-hyped and kind of lame and doesn't really have anything to do with
anything, other than making John Travolta and Uma Thurman dance again.
It's not cool or sexy or interesting, it drags on, and it's been done
before. Someone involved in the production was sure this would be
a great "hook" for audiences, but it falls flat. Obviously someone
thinks it's great, because the end credits feature everyone in the cast
and crew doing their own little dances; they're supposed to look
impromptu (showing how much fun everyone had) but they all looked staged
and forced. In short, everything that was good with the dance
scene in Pulp Fiction falls flat in Be Cool.
And another thing...there's an awful lot of singing in this.
There are a few featured songs by Christina Milian; if you love her
singing, you'll like Be Cool because she does a lot of it.
Three or four songs. Sure, it's about the record biz, but at times
it's like watching an MTV video, and unlike MTV, if you don't like the
music video, you can't change channels in a movie theater (although,
that's a good idea).
It has amusing moments and a good supporting cast, but it's still not
a very good movie. If you're a huge fan of Get Shorty, or
you really like the music of Christina Milian, or you can't get enough
of The Rock or Vince Vaughn, it might be worth checking out, but at best
it's just "all right."
Expectation from the Title: An instructional video about what
it takes to become a successful snowman.
Mother's Rule (Always Say Something Good About Everything):
There's a lot of charming people in this movie.
The Pros: Funny performances, charming actors.
The Cons: Seems re-hashed. John Travolta disappears into
the scenery. Some potentially offensive bits to some people, some
potentially boring bits to others. No terribly memorable moments,
a bit too much singing.
Looking for John Travlota or Uma
Therman or Uma Thurmann or The Rcok or Vince Vaun or Vince Vaugn?