Friday, February 18, 2011
(Image taken from: cinemablend.com)
What happened to you, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson? You were supposed to be the next big action star, man. You were supposed to be the next Ah-nold. But instead, you made vapid, uninspired movies like Race to Witch Mountain, The Tooth Fairy, and *shudder* The Scorpion King. How could you let your fans down like that? But hey, what’s this? You have a new, action-packed thrill ride of a movie with you holding a gun and looking all menacing on the cover called Faster? Really? No way, man! Is it any good? Hey, why are you making that face all of a sudden? Well, is it? Oh…I understand. It’s not, is it? Oh, man, Rock! Why’d you have to go and do this to your fans again? Huh, man? Why? Whyyyyyy!
The Movie: One Star
For a movie called Faster, this piece of garbage starring the Rock sure does move pretty damn slow. When I originally saw the trailer for this in the theater, I actually, no lie, edged up in my seat and got really excited. As a WWF (oh, I’m sorry, WWE) nerd who thinks wrestling reached its peak in the Stone Cold/The Rock era, I really had high hopes for the man who would later drop “The Rock” in his name and just go by the title of Dwayne Johnson. But, man oh man, has that legend, who could at one point in his career raise a single eyebrow and make the whole world swoon, let us all down. Faster, I’m afraid to say, is no better than The Scorpion King. And while I know that that last line must have gotten you saying, “Come on, man. It can’t be THAT bad,” it actually is. Faster is really and truly awful. I’d even say that it’s WORSE than The Scorpion King. Okay, I take that back. Nothing could be that horrendous.
But seriously, Faster is pretty bad. And why is it so bad? Well, because it’s just so damn forgettable. The key reason for this is because nobody in this film even needs to be in it. The Rock plays a character named Driver -- just Driver. He’s released from prison and immediately goes on a killing spree for the people who killed his brother. But you know what? If you put in, say, Skeet Ulrich, or Wesley Snipes, or, hey, I don’t know, Steven Seagal, you would have pretty much the same exact movie. At least with this script, you would. The Rock probably has less than a 100 words to say in the film, and none of it is interesting. Silent waters run deep, I know, but why put a charismatic man like The Rock in a movie where he pretty much just shoots things and walks away? That’s like putting Johnny Knoxville in a movie about taking safety precautions and not having a single wink at how ironic that would be. It’s like that, but worse. At least that might be kind of interesting.
This movie is beyond boring. There’s a lot of gunplay going on here, especially when a man who only goes by the title of “Killer” comes into the fray, but the bullets being fired aren’t exciting in the slightest. And that’s because I don’t care who lives and who dies in this film. I don’t care if The Rock finds comfort or if he’s dead inside after killing his foes. I don’t care if Billy Bob Thorton, who just goes by the title of “Cop” (man, they really stuck to that "nobody has a name" concept), tracks down The Rock and stops him. I don’t care about any of it. All I care about is the fact that The Rock, a man who actually showed some promise after The Rundown, has made another boring film. Is it any wonder why he’s supposedly going back into wrestling? It’s because he realizes that movies are just not for him. Whoever his agent is, he should have been fired a long time ago. The Rock should not be making movies like Faster after this many years in the business. Down the line, we’ll all secretly still hope that The Rock finally does an action movie where he kills somebody and then utters some really corny one-liners, but it looks like that day may never come. Faster puts the nail in the coffin.
The Disc: Two Stars
The special features on this disc may be brief, but they actually add a little something to this abysmal package. Well, at least one of them does. On the whole disc, there are only two special features, and calling them two is being generous. One of them is an alternate ending, and the other is deleted scenes. Both of them give you the ability to hear the director talk about the scenes before you watch them, but his words aren’t necessary. All he had to say was, “We cut this for space and time,” and that’s it. Everything else he says, like the deleted scenes themselves, is superfluous.
The “Alternate Ending,” as I mentioned earlier, adds a little something to the film. I think they actually should have kept it in. The director says that test audiences weren’t pleased with it, but I don’t believe that for a second. Any test audience that actually stayed awake long enough to see the end, had to have liked it better than the theatrical ending. The theatrical ending sucks. Without spoiling it for you, the “Alternate Ending” has a great deal more action in it, and is truly, truly ridiculous, which is what The Rock should have been doing all along. I’m tired of The Rock shying away from outrageous action in his films. It’s why The Rundown was pretty awesome. It was the kind of crazy that works.
As for the “Deleted Scenes,” they were deleted for a reason. None of them are necessary, and they definitely deserved to be cut. I wouldn’t recommend this movie to anyone, not even for a rental, but if you liked it (seriously?), then I think you should see the alternate ending. It definitely adds something to the film.
Length: 98 min
Distributor: CBS Films
Release Date: 2011-03-01
Starring: Dwayne Johnson, Billy Bob Thornton
Directed by: George Tillman Jr.
Produced by: Joe Gayton, Dara Weintraub
Written by: Tony Gayton & Joe Gayton
Visit the Faster Official Website