Today I watched "War, Inc" (2008), a sort of sequal or re-set of "Grosse Point Blank" (an awesome A+ character movie I rate up there with "January Man") starring John Cusack and many of the same actors, including his sister Joan as a mercurial co-agent. There are also some shades of "Say Anything" lurking about. John's protrayal of a weary warrior looking for connections back to real life has genuine depth and subtlety. Ben Kingsley is awesome as always, Marisa Tormei makes a tricky character believable, and the host of cardboard baddies and technotricks are outrageous and hilarious.
The direction/production is not as engaging and personal as GPB, but in the heavy effects and megadeath environment of this film it makes a good compromise. They were clearly going for action pace in some situations where I would like to have lingered a bit more on personal conflicts/resolutions; but this a production choice that has to be made and often leaves the action/adventure audience wishing for more 3-hours films that have/take the time to do both. Blame the studios and distributors.
It was pretty good, quite funny in places and heavy with irony, but it didn't add much except current affairs material/situations to the original. Still, the protagonist's ability to make important decisions in a heartbeat is practically a superpower unto itself. John Cusack did a couple short CQC scenes with his kickboxing and some good choreography for multiple opponents, but the themes were mostly satirical, which is cool and always needed in the movie marketplace.
Anyone who appreciated the original would probably enjoy seeing the reset, or if you like movies like "Dr. Strangelove" or "The Running Man" and so on. I was happy to get referenced to it, fun to watch, not a waste of time. If you haven't seen "Grosse Point Blank" then I definitely recommend that first. It has a ton of deep stuff going on amidst a lot of campy fun. "War, Inc" has a lot of great gags and character interactions that are based on the original.
In case you didn't realize it, I DO have a sense of humor. How about you?
"I will not fear. Fear is the mind-killer... I will face my fear. I will let it pass over and through me, and when it has gone, only I will remain." --The Bene Gesserit
"Time is a spiral. Space is a curve. I know you get dizzy, but try not to lose your nerve." -- Neil Peart
"I'm not in the ship. I am the ship." -- River Tam
"The truth is simple. It's the lies that get complicated." -- me
"No matter where you go, there you are." --Buckaroo Banzai