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Pushing Tin (1999)
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Review Date: April 27, 1999
Director: Mike Newell
Writer: Glen Charles and Les Charles
Producers: Art Linson
Actors:
John Cusack as Nick Falzone
Billy Bob Thornton as Russell
Cate Blanchett as Connie
Angelina Jolie as Mary Bell
Plot:
Ace air-traffic control man, Nick, finds himself a worthy opponent, in Russell, the new air-traffic kid on the block. But despite Russell's obvious indifference to Nick's competitiveness, Nick suddenly finds himself obsessed by the man's enigmatic superiority, and slowly begins to lose grasp of his professional and personal life.
Critique:
Entertaining film that includes many funny moments, a roll of great actors in top form, an original profession to dissect in air-traffic control, and an overall feel of nothingness once finished viewing. I only saw this film a couple of hours ago, and already, I don't remember much about it. That's just the kind of movie it is. No huge moments, no huge laughs, but enjoyable enough to see, and recommended on an even higher level on video. Now despite its two-hour time clock, this movie never left me bored, and offered a great mano-a-mano showing between the spry and cocky Cusack character, and the cool and distant Thornton character. In fact, Billy Bob Thornton is the one who really made this movie fun for me to watch. His character's ability to thrive coolly under all of the pressure impressed upon him, was both hilarious and inspiring to behold.

Kudos to Cate Blanchett for taking on a completely different role from her previously Oscar-nominated turn as the Queen of England (She plays a perfect Italian New York housewife in this one), and Angelina Jolie's breasts, who put forth some of the greatest work by breasts in a film since the Jennifer Tilly performances in BRIDE OF CHUCKY (7/10). I personally see a great future for her pompons in the movie industry, especially when you consider that they are attached to a truly great actress in her own right :). Cusack is Cusack and jives perfectly as the fast-talking, smartass control man, who eventually loses all control. The ending of this film was a tad cheesy, but in a nutshell, its basic message expressed a need for external stimuli in certain relationships, in order to jumpstart any stalled emotions. You'll enjoy this movie if you're looking for something funny and less filling, with an interesting insight into a profession that you don't know much about, some fine actors, and a unique and humorous performance from Billy Bob Thornton.
(c) 2018 Berge Garabedian

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