Friday, July 08, 2005

These days, they're REALLY looking for ... : "A Few Good Men"

Caught some of this while traveling not long ago, and it really is a solid movie, even underrated considering both the star power and dialogue. True, Aaron Sorkin would go to be Mr. Rapid-Fire-Exchange-While-Walking-Down-Hallways man for both "Sports Night" and "The West Wing." But this was his first splash, and heavy hitters Cruise and Nicholson ate these lines up.

It's pretty hard to find anyone who doesn't know the money lines from this movie, but I still couldn't wait to see Jack Nicholson ("Ironweed") go toe to toe with Tom Cruise ("Legend") in that military courtroom. As you know, Nicholson plays a high-ranking colonel called to testify in the death of a U.S. Marine on his base. (Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, as it turns out. Anything much happening there recently?)

Cruise is the lawyer, aided by Demi Moore ("Blame It on Rio") and Kevin Pollack ("Willow"). Those supporting roles are decent, although they pale to Kiefer Sutherland as a hardcore grunt loyal to Nicholson. Also above average are the legendary J.T. Walsh and Kevin Bacon, but really this is Cruise and Nicholson's show, and it's great to see two top-notch guys going at it, even if Jack makes Tom his nancy boy for most of the movie

Here's a fun fact: Did you know that since 1990 Cruise has averaged just one movie a year? Yeah, only 15 movies, counting this latest alien funfest. Same thing with Nicholson. Maybe that's why they're actually worth a damn as actors. Hell, Ben Stiller did 15 movies last year alone. But seriously, let's take some random guy ... Colin Farrell. Let me look it up ... yep, a whopping 12 movies since 2000. Geez, take a break, man. I mean, "S.W.A.T." doesn't exactly warrant a "For Your Consideration" ad in Variety, does it? (If only HBO would play this more. I mean, 20 times a week isn't nearly enough.)

As for "A Few Good Men," I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the signature exchange between Tom and Jack. It's not overstating to call the courtroom scene one of the more powerful scenes in movie history, especially with Nicholson's brow furrowing more with each question from Cruise. As for the climax, well, I don't want to say who ordered the Code Red, but I was curious about the truth. Please ... tell me ... where can I find the truth? Oh, here? Thanks.


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