Three way love, beach front homes and mind altering substances – welcome to the drug business Oliver Stone style. Follow us as we check out his latest flick out on Blu-ray "Savages: Unrated Edition" hitting shelves Nov.13 from Universal Home Entertainment. The review of all thrills and kills begins below.
Title: "Savages" (Unrated Edition)
Grade: 2 1/2
Cast: Taylor Kitsch, Blake Lively, Aaron Johnson
Director: Oliver Stone
Runtime: 142 minutes
Release Company: Universal Home Entertainment
The Flick: "Savages" has some very memorable things going for it. It has a very engaging story of the realities of drug dealing, some tasty performances by the veteran actors in the cast and some slick direction ala Oliver Stone. So why the low number of stars? The young cast who play the three in love leads are so miscast that it takes you right out of the film at key moments. Aaron Johnson is an uncharismatic good guy, Taylor Kitsch barely believable as the bad guy with a dark side and Blake Lively frankly lifeless as the gal who is supposed to inspire love from both. It’s only the slimy sleaze of Travolta, the surprise of a powerful Salma Hayek and the serious demonic prowess of Benicio Del Toro (who all but steals the flick out from underneath everybody!) that saves "Savages" from being dragged down by uninspired babes in the woods. (Plus I didn’t see the rated version, but there is at least a Taylor butt shot for the gals here – didn’t do much for me unrated though!)
Best Feature: The five part featurette on the film is a tad too polished, so I say check out the engaging and honest feature 'Commentary' by Oliver Stone – there are some candid gold nuggets within. (Interesting chat on budget, cutting a book down to size and describing Del Tor as 'unpredictable'!)
Best Hidden Gem: Again, Del Toro is so creepy, so sinister and so believable as a drug killing henchman that it felt like watching a documentary.
Worth the Moola: Good story, good supporting cast and good direction, but bad leads – you decide on this one.