Post – RED, Frank Moses (Bruce Willis) has well and truly hooked up with Sarah (Mary-Louise Parker) and they are living, well, some kind of a life. He’s fearful, she’s bored. Then Marvin (John Malkovich) turns up dead; at least for a moment, and Victoria (Helen Mirren) is charged with killing them, and it’s on. Awesome times. And then add in Bailey (Anthony Hopkins) and you’ve got a fabulous romp.
I absolutely and totally loved this. I love the humour, I love the action, I love the casting, and I kind of hope they made more, but I suspect they won’t. Wait… According to IMDB, Red 3 is in development. Yes!!!
So, Danny Ocean (George Clooney) is back out of jail (again) and he and the rest of the eleven have found things to spend their millions on. But Terry Benedict (Andy Garcia) has found them, and insists on compensation. And then there is Francois Toulour (Vincent Cassel), a super-rich, super-clever gangster who wants to compete against Ocean to be considered the best thief in the world, and Isabel Lahiri (Catherine Zeta-Jones) a beautiful police officer who was dating Rusty Ryan (Brad Pitt), but now is set to catch him and arrest him.
Again, there is a lot of fun, trickiness and playing with expectations, but it is, yet again, ruined for me by the representations of the females in the film. At least Tess (JuliaRoberts) gets a bit of a better go this time, actually doing something (even if she is forced into it by a whole bunch of men she doesn’t even know… creepy) (although seeing her play a character pretending to be Julia Roberts was a lot of fun). Then there is the Catherine Zeta-Jones character, a high-ranking police officer who is driven to fraud by her emotions – the need for revenge against her ex, and who (spoiler alert) is manipulated into giving up her very successful career by the very same ex and her father, who she believed was dead. Men manipulating women a lot. Way to spoil a good, fun film.
Roxie Hart (Renee Zellweger) wants to be on the stage, but is in a tedious life married to a boring mechanic, Amos (John C Reilly). When she discovers the man she is having an affair with is not only unable to get her an audition, but is going to leave her, she shoots him and is quickly arrested for murder. She joins Velma Kelly (Catherine Zeta-Jones), a famous singer and dancer who killed her husband and sister after she caught them in bed together. The two use Mama Morton (Queen Latifah) to obtain the legal services of Billy Flynn (Richard Gere) to set them free. And all this whilst singing and dancing.
I have no idea if this is a good film or not. It certainly is a very interesting interpretation of a stage show to film, with it flowing from cabaret performances in a club to scenes of reality. What I know is the music is fabulous. The other thing is that we did Chicago as a high-school performance long before the recent stage (and then film) revival and I still know pretty much every word of every song. It was just as well that there was no one home at my place and my neighbours were away, because I watched the film singing at the top of my lungs. And no one needs to hear that.
Chicago won Oscar for Best Picture, Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Catherine Zeta-Jones), Best Art Direction – Set Decoration, Best Costume Design, Best Film Editing and Best Sound. Chicago was nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role (Renee Zellweger), Best Actor in a Supporting Role (John C. Reilly), Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Queen Latifah), Best Director (Rob Marshall), Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay (Bill Condon), Best Cinematography and Best Music, Original Song (I Move On).