Thursday, April 2, 2009

The International [2009]

Director: Ton Tykwer
Starring: Clive Owen, Naomi Watts, Armin Mueller-Stahl, Ulrich Thomsen
Points: 80 out of 100
Rating: Teen (Gun-fights, violence, blood)
Comment: "Imagine CSI on a world-wide scale..."

Corruption spread amongst men like an incurable disease. Though this movie would not heal anything, it will make you think twice about trusting banks with your hard-earned money because at the bottom line, it all comes down to the love for money. People would sell their souls for a lot less.

Just like the title might have suggested, this flick will take you on a ride across Europe and the Middle-East as you join an obsessive Interpol Agent Louis Salinger (Clive Owen) attempts to bring down the IBBC, a corrupt financial institution involved in illegal arms-dealing.

Clive Owen has a lot of capabilities to be more than just an action star, but nowadays he is seemingly being typecast as bitter, trigger-happy anti-hero. Although that is not necessarily a bad thing, personally I think he is better suited for roles that are more about brains than brawns. While this is not actually a traditional action film, there are lots of gunfights and I am not fairly certain whether or not he is the best man for the role.

Looking past the casting, however, this is an altogether decent action-thriller where every scene sets up the next. That could either work for or against you. If you are going to watch this in the cinema, please refrain yourself from taking toilet breaks for it will disrupt your understanding of the entire movie. It's not so much about the action, but rather it is the plot that moves fast.

One particular theme that I find intriguing is how well they brought forward the issue of bureaucracy. Just like everything else, the idea of bureaucracy was meant for convenience. That is what they're trying to sell to us. But in reality, bureaucracy is such a hassle and for the unscrupulous, that spells 'Opportunity' for there are bound to be loopholes in the system.

However, as good as it can get, most likely this film will merely preach to the choir. As though we don't know already that international corporations cannot be trusted.

Points Calculation

The Good [+100]
- Fast-paced action-thriller
- Well-balanced plot and action

The Bad [-20]
- Could have had better casting

100 - 20 = 80 points

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