Bringing you honest reviews of recent releases
Sandra Bullock – ‘Calamity’ Jane Bodine
Scoot McNairy – Rich
Joaquim de Almeida – Pedro Castillo
Billy Bob Thornton – Pat Candy
Anthony Mackie – Ben
Zoe Kazan – LeBlanc
Our Brand Is Crisis is absolutely shocking. Just terrible. Its plot, its point, its script and style of direction..
This movie had me phasing out, the classic blurred vision which comes from staring at something so hard that it is no longer in focus as you lose any bit of interest. I can honestly say that I will never sit in front of this movie again; due to how shit it is. Which is what I find most surprising, because we’re talking Sandra Bullock here – effective actress who really delivers the comedy when needed. And the dead serious when needed. She’s a talented woman. But this movie did absolutely nothing to broadcast her talent and in reverse, threw her down the ladder a few rungs..
My first observation was how the direction of this movie shat all over any potential moments of comedy; the airplane disembarkation stands out sorely for me.
When Jane arrives in Bolivia to start work, the plane lands on the runway and the door opens. She exits – then slips down the stairs and falls flat on her arse. Bang.
Silence in the auditorium.
That’s right – a comic moment which could have been hilarious, just – wasn’t. And this was mainly due to the atmosphere of the movie overall. Up until this scene, Our Brand Is Crisis had been quite serious, political, and far from funny. Then suddenly Bullock pulls a stunt you’d see in many of her other flicks (The Heat, Miss Congeniality, etc.) which just didn’t fit and made me cringe rather than laugh. And then the movie returned to being serious.
Almost as though restricted by the movie’s plot, Bullock’s natural humour was quashed. Suffocated by stony foreign faces and endless political boardroom (or should that be boredroom?) meetings. The political aspect of the movie took charge with full force, extinguishing all other (or what could have been) sub-plots and drama. I was bored for its entirety, which doesn’t often happen – some movies let up and make way for comic relief. This didn’t, and bordered on painful.
Zoe Kazan (known for playing the lead role in 2012’s Ruby Sparks) appears as whizzkid LeBlanc.Thank god. Not only is she a fresh face amongst some dull cast members, she breaks up the dynamic between young and old when on screen. Usually seen sitting amongst books whilst spouting some intelligent dialogue, Kazan’s slick attitude was the only thing I liked about the cast.
The scene where Bodine’s candidate’s vehicle tries to outrun his opponent’s was a prime example of Kazan’s work. It was like a classic scenario of being on holiday, with older relatives and younger family members in the same car; the younger ones getting up and excitedly looking out the window, etc.
LeBlanc is seen leaning over the dashboard, excitedly translating a fight happening in a foreign language outside the vehicle. Probably the most trivial of scenes in a movie, but Kazan certainly added a spark. Because the rest of this feature lost its spark somewhere near the beginning.
Fans of politics should enjoy Our Brand Is Crisis. It’s bursting with campaign activity and sensible jargon that the characters strut around talking about. Voting, ballots, it’s all here.
Other viewers might find they are watching one of Bullock’s worst movies in history. There honestly is nothing interesting or intriguing about this movie, it simply – happens and ends. I was surprised the actress agreed to take part, it does absolutely nothing for her career.
I refuse to discuss this movie any further.
Give it a miss.