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Savages
BLU-RAY disk
11.28.2012 By: J.A. Hamilton
Savages order download
Director:
Oliver Stone

Actors:
Taylor Kitsch
Blake Lively
Aaron Johnson

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Kick-Ass and John Carter run one of the best weed distribution gigs ever put together and business is killer until the Mexican Cartel want a piece of the action. When the boys turn down the Cartel's deal, they kidnap O (they guys' shared girlfriend) and force them to get bloody.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
SAVAGES the novel has been praised here and there, but the film (especially by comparison) was not. For me, the fact that Oliver Stone went in on this project was interesting. Stone's work is hit or miss, with most of the misses being run in as too much satire or far too long a run time. SAVAGES was neither of those. Sure, there was satire, but no more than any other film dealing with these types of issues and the length felt right to me. I love a good drug caper filled with double crosses, crooked cops and lots of gunfire and violence and on those levels the film delivers.

With those issues out of the way I'm sure your dying to hear about the casting. Stone me if you will, but I happen to like Taylor Kitsch. I won't defend BATTLESHIP (I still haven't seen it because it looks too damn ridiculous), but I really enjoyed JOHN CARTER and will anxiously go to bat for this guy because I like his acting on the action front. He and his military crew kick some major ass and add much needed machismo to this mother. It took me a minute to recognize Aaron (Kick-Ass) Johnson, but once I did I couldn't help but root for him as well. Besides, who can't appreciate what these boys are doing in the drug business? They're like the long lost outstretching branch of Dave Chappelle's Mr. Nice Guy organization with the right kind of muscle to deal with any Samsons that come their way. Well, almost.

On that note, I have to say they handled the situation with the Cartel poorly. It's the Cartel boys, I think a better plan of action (one that didn't involve a mere 12 hour getaway window) was in order. And what's up with O's "last trip to the mall"? That was hella stupid and a predictable necessity to move the story forward. Benecio Del Toro rocked as the leader of the Cartel's sadistic "gardener" crew. That's one guy I wouldn't want trimming my hedges. His character was easily one of the best villains I've seen this year. Johnny Travolta's crooked cop was cool beans as well. I love seeing him in mad dog crazy roles (FROM PARIS WITH LOVE being my favorite of late). However, Blake Lively is bland no matter which way you slice her and trust me, I was hoping someone would put her out of her misery by the end of it.

SAVAGES is a cool action flick and a well rounded (though not overly original) drug flick that was by no means epic, but was still entertaining. The two rounds of endings were interesting (I preferred the first one for reality's sake), but I'm not all for the actions that unfold with Salma Hayek's character. I just don't buy it, and it makes all that chatting with O very pointless. Also, I'm a fan of Emile Hirsch as well, but dude needs to get more screen time than this if he's going to stay current. I dug this flick and would recommend it. It's not perfect, but was still a good time as far as action vehicles go.
THE EXTRAS
Commentary: I like Stone's commentaries, the dude's a great filmmaker and knows his stuff. However, due to most of his film's lengths, these are reserved for only the purest commentary fans.

Deleted Scenes: Not much here other than extensions of what we already see and more crap we don't need to. Standard cuts, but in this case more Benecio and Travolta are a good thing.

Stone Cold Savages: The Making Of The Film: A five part making of piece that mostly consists of interviews with the cast and great local settings. One thing is certain, this film was one of Stone's better pieces in recent memory.

Previews: There are a couple trailers, a pocket BLU app for smartphones and tablets, some BD-LIVE content if your wired to the net and this unrated edition also contains DVD, DIGITAL and ULTRAVIOLET Copies of the film.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
I was surprised by the directing, this didn't feel like Oliver Stone, but it was shot very well and the acting isn't as bad as you've no doubt heard. For a drug kingpin flick, it's well paced, full of action and relatively fun throughout. It's not legendary and won't hold up to multiple viewings, but as a one shot it's fun.
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8:19PM on 11/28/2012
I got through 5 minutes or so, and when the word "wargasm" was said, I damn near destroyed everything ever. I couldn't take the movie seriously after that.
I got through 5 minutes or so, and when the word "wargasm" was said, I damn near destroyed everything ever. I couldn't take the movie seriously after that.
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