So for some reason the powers that be thought inviting a foul-mouthed fat head like myself to a press screening of The Guard was a good idea. I assumed they didn’t realize what they were doing and took’em up on the offer. This meant I got to fake like people give a shit about me and my words and get my self into Sony Studios. I wish I had some wacky tale about me bumbling my way around the studio or that I stole a bike from set Pee-Wee style and lead a chase throughout the studios until I got caught and they offered me a deal to buy the rights to my life story. I’m pretty sure they’d cast Jason Statham to play me. We’re both bald, kick serious ass when attacked by terrorists, ninjas, robots, or flying terrorist ninja robots. I guess mainly because we’re both bald. Also I speak in a British accent but that’s more to annoy people since I grew up in New England. Anyway, I got this movie deal going with Sony Studios so I guess I don’t need to write up a review of the film The Guard.
Suddenly the theme to Sesame Street emanates from my crotch, it’s my ringtone. After a heated twenty minute phone call with my editor, I kick a hole in a wall and find out:
A) I should probably change my ringtone if I want to be taken seriously
B) I randomly believed I had a movie deal with Sony Studios but don’t
C) My editor would rather “light his nuts on fire then talk to me one more second”
D) I should probably tell you my thoughts on The Guard and get the hell on with it!
This is easily the best contemporary western with a 70’s feel in its style while not relying completely on either shtick to hold the film.
It stands strong on a solid script and a really impressive cast. Below I gush about Gleeson but before that I’d really like to say how awesome Mark Strong was, as Clive the criminal that’s tired of the daily ins and outs of crime. Clive got into crime for the thrill- the gun fights, and the lovely ladies. He was hoping more for the romanticized life of John Dillinger than the reality that they’re all just businessmen mildly avoiding cops that don’t really care as long as you pad up their wallets.
The star of the movie is Gleeson and he truly owns this film. Even if he doesn’t win one of the many important statues, he should rest assured that he’s won an award… in my heart, for his portrayal of Boyle. While a lot of films have drug using, foul-mouthed, prostitute-loving cops, this is one you really like and stick with throughout the film. You learn a lot about the character and what’s important to him. You can’t help but side with him even when you don’t agree with his actions. This is where the script really shines and Gleeson’s honed skills have built a truly memorable character. In many ways Gleeson plays a much ruder and more realistic Rooster Cogburn type.
The relationship between Don Cheadle’s FBI agent and Gleeson’s Boyle is great. You genuinely like watching these two misfits become friends that last a lifetime. While it’s got some mush and a little filler, most of their relationship is believable in the construct of the film. By the end you’re rooting for these two to take out the bad guys, get the girls, and ride off into the Irish sunset. Spoiler: There really aren’t any girls to get but there are a couple prostitutes Sergeant Boyle sees that are damn hot!
Sony Picture Classics The Guard is a solid dark comedy / contemporary western that should be seen by all looking for a break from the ultra budget 3D explosion event films of the summer. Despite its flaws, this film will keep you entertained and fill you up like a good home cooked meal (mom being writer/director John Michael McDonagh).
The Guard opens in theaters on July 29, 2011
Director: John Micheal McDonagh
Starring: Brendan Gleeson, Don Cheadale, Mark Strong, Liam Cunningham, David Wilmot, Sarah Greene
The synopsis (from IMDB):
‘Sergeant Gerry Boyle is a small-town Irish cop with a confrontational personality, a subversive sense of humor, a dying mother, a fondness for prostitutes, and absolutely no interest whatsoever in the international cocaine-smuggling ring that has brought straight-laced FBI agent Wendell Everett to his door.’
CP Lorusso is TV / Film / Web writer and editor working in Los Angeles. He can be reached at CPL[ a t ]YouBentMyWookie.com or on Twitter @CPLorusso.