Vantage Point (2008)

Posted by prla1983 on August 16, 2008 • 2 commentsEmail This Post

"Vantage Point" hints of "Rashomon" in that a single event is told from different points of view, six different ones in this particular case. While the similarities end there, it is an interesting spin on an otherwise trivial action movie by first-time director Pete Travis. It tells of how POTUS (that's President of the United States for you) goes to Salamanca, Spain, to talk at an anti-terrorist summit and ends up getting shot by... terrorists in front of every one at the plaza plus millions of viewers at home. Or did he?

So, about every 15 minutes you see all that happened again. Despite getting new facts in each re-telling of the story, it gets repetitive after a while and the intended suspense kinda gets stale because of how old the procedure quickly becomes. Thankfully, most of the twists are interesting but it smells of a movie that wants you to think it is smarter than it actually is.

One of those points of view is that of Secret Services agent Thomas Barnes (Dennis Quaid) who is back at his job after taking a bullet for the same President a year before. Quaid does a good job as the permanently scoffing veteran agent, with shades of Clint Eastwood in Wolfgang Petersen's "In The Line of Fire". Another perspective, which really is useless to the whole story until the final unbelievable coincidence that brings closure to the film, is that of American tourist Howard Lewis (Forest Whitaker). He's running around with his camcorder not doing much until... he saves the day. But be that as it may, it's always a pleasure to see Whitaker (who was fresh from winning an Oscar the year before) on screen. His last scene has such an incredible acting from him that is actually emotionally moving amid all the hardness of the previous ninety minutes.

"Vantage Point" is a simple action movie with a somewhat simple plot told in a convoluted way. It works pretty much all the way as long as your suspension of disbelief device is functioning. If you're the kind that is constantly looking for holes and pointing out stuff that could never happen in the real world, steer well away from this. Other than that, "Vantage Point" is like half a season of "24" condensed in less than ninety minutes. Without Kiefer Sutherland.

Oh well, you still get a Jack, but it's the other guy, from "Lost".

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2 Comments:

Blogger i said...

eu gostei bastante até. sem lhe conferir grandes pretensões intelectuais, é um bom filme de acção. achei a ideia dos vários pontos de vista interessante. e o facto da explosão se dar em espanha teve o seu "quê" de proximidade

Monday, August 18, 2008 1:08:00 pm  
Blogger Enolough said...

A intelectualidade não é característica boa ou má de um filme.

Não há pretensões intelectuais no "Vantage Point", há um bom conceito, uma boa utilização da câmara, uma maneira inteligente de contar uma história e um cenário fora do comum (Espanha).

O voltar atrás constante não chateia, sabemos o que estamos ali a fazer e o que está a acontecer. O voltar atrás apenas aguça o apetite para o final interessante de tão pouco épico e glorioso que é.

Temas como o "cidadão jornalista", o terrorismo, efeito borboleta, produção de grandes eventos, o directo televisivo, etc. estão ali com toda a actualidade e ajudam a fazer deste filme o segundo filme do ano para mim.

(O primeiro é o "Tropa de Elite")

Monday, August 18, 2008 3:14:00 pm  

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