Review – Catch.44

★ ½

While I was watching Catch.44 it was apparent that it was trying to be like Reservoir Dogs and Pulp Fiction. They were trying to make a Tarantino movie. This is obvious from the start. It was shot out of sequence, and the characters seem like they would be in a Tarantino movie. They even go as far to attempt to capture his dialog. There is only one problem, only Tarantino can make a Tarantino movie. People have tried to copy his work, but no one has succeeded so far. I don’t think anyone ever will either. Catch.44 is no exception. You can just feel this movie wanted to be great.

The movie has a good enough plot to make a decent movie. Tes (Akerman), Kara (Nikki Reed), and Tara (Deborah Ann Woll) have a job to do. It seems simple enough. The three of them have to intercept a double-cross drug shipment for their crime boss Mel (Willis) at a very isolated diner. But when a series of events occur, it is apparent that nothing was what it seemed. So now everyone has to figure out the truth of what is really going on.

For everyone to find out what is happening, we get many flashbacks. Some work alright, and some don’t. The characters weren’t that interesting, and you never get invested in any of them. So by the end you aren’t really rotting for anyone at all. Where it truly fails though is the three-way standoff. Three people holding guns to each other and talking for quite a long time may have looked good on the script. But on screen it doesn’t work well. It did work well and manage to have some tension for the first few minutes or so. After that it just got old fast. It may have worked better if we really cared about any of the characters. Like I said though, we never get to attached to any of them. By the end of the standoff, we are just simply watching. There is no applause or tears over what happens.

                                

The best thing about Catch.44 is easily the acting. Bruce Willis, Malin Akerman, and Forest Whitaker are excellent. They get to show off their acting chops, and it seems that they had a lot of fun playing these characters. Willis nails his character (while watching though I kept seeing his character as Butch, like he decided to change his name and become a mob boss). Akerman is really good, she gives one of her better performances. She does not act up to the level of Whitaker or Willis. But she still manages to hold her own pretty well. Whitaker gives the standout performance here. He is the one who really becomes the character. Without the great acting the movie would have been completely unwatchable.

The only reason this movie didn’t achieve the greatness it wanted (or at least be a good entertaining movie) is Aaron Harvey. Hate to but all the blame on him, but he is the one to blame. He directed the movie and wrote the screenplay. Those where the big faults of the movie, the directing, and the script. In the hands of a better director and screenwriter it could have been better. Harvey’s script is not all bad, but there are more bad spots than good. Maybe that long standoff could have worked with a great script. They were trying to copy Tarantino, and he has long scenes of just dialog that work so well. The opening scene of Inglorious Bastards for one.

Catch.44 is not all bad though. It does have it’s moments, and the acting was great. For the most part though it is boring to watch. This happens when you have lots of dialog and have a bad script. I did say it had it’s moments, but there are way more bad ones that tend to make you forget about the good ones. As soon as the movie has a good scene, it has some bad ones right after. Overall this movie did not work well, it was a mess. Right after I saw the movie I wanted to pop Reservoir Dogs in my DVD player straight away. It’s just not worth seeing a worse version of other great movies.

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4 thoughts on “Review – Catch.44

  1. So, why did you remove that comment, then? Didn’t like criticism? That’s more the showing of a poor writer than anything. Good writers want feedback; they want to improve and they don’t pass off feedback like that. Maybe you wrote down my comment — maybe not. But deleting it (assuming it’s not just site error that is causing it to not show) seems silly and won’t help anyone … especially yourself.

    Anyway, I did not want to appear as though I was attacking you, or or your blog. Nor do I want you to stop writing. Writing more is the only way to improve. I read once that the first 10,000 words anyone writes in a new venture are not going to be very good. I believe it’s closer to 1,000,000 words, but the number isn’t what’s important. You need to write to improve, and I was offering advice on what I thought needed improvement. Some was purely stylistic, but most was simple grammar that must be learned if you want to be a successful writer.

    I suppose the final note I made came off as harsh, especially the final sentence I wrote. Really, I just don’t like seeing people advertise their blogs. So, sorry about that. I take back the comment that your blog isn’t worth reading. But it does need work — a lot of work — if you want it to be worthwhile.

    I’m impressed, to be honest, that initiative is being shown at 15. But, on the vast lands of the internet, being young and having initiative is not enough. Age doesn’t matter here, as you’ll be judged as an adult anyway. If the content isn’t worth reading, people won’t stop and say “Oh, he’s only 15, it’s okay that it’s not perfect.” They’ll simply click away and never return, because there’s so much high-quality work out there.

    I write too much in these comments. Okay, here’s the quick: I would prefer if you kept writing. I would feel bad if I discouraged someone from doing something they want to do. But you do need to improve, largely in the areas I mentioned in the last comment. Accept the criticism and use it to improve. And write. Write as much as you currently do, if you find the time, but always work toward improving. If you’re unsure about something, look it up. Use a spell checker, a grammar checker (I personally prefer the one at http://www.paperrater.com/free_paper_grader), and keep getting better. At its current state, your blog is not worth following. But that doesn’t mean that it never will be.

    Ciao.

  2. Sorry, I was upset when I first saw it. It was wrong to delete it, I did it with out thinking. I did make a note of the things you mentioned though. I will try my best to improve. It didn’t seem this way at first, but you have been very helpful. If you read this, can you answer this question. Aside from the grammar, are the reviews themselves any good? Thanks a lot. I also restored your comment.

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