"After the Sunset"
Directed by Brett Ratner.
Written by Craig Rosenberg and Paul Zbyszewski.
Starring Pierce Brosnan, Woody Harrelson, Salma Hayek and Don
Release Year: 2004
Review Date: 12/7/04
From the plot, to the plot, all the way to
the plot, "After the Sunset" really blows. But, here's the
thing--Salma Hayek is SO fuckin' hot!
So, what does this mean? You will
watch a very hokie opening number where nifty Irish jewel thief Max
Burdett (Pierce Brosnan) somehow steals--by remote control--a car by
getting its VIN number and eludes 20 FBI agents...but, you look at
that beautiful face, the make-your-female-cubemate-angry body and
the Latin lingo, and you say, "Thank you, Salma, for saving this
You watch as a less-than-average fed named
Lloyd (Woody Harrelson) tries to catch Max by playing a clumsy
Inspector Clouseau type, hamming it up with Max along the way trying
to get to know the man...but then you see Salma pull off that shirt
to show us those picture-perfect abs and you say "Thank you, Salma,
for saving this motion picture."
You watch as Don Cheadle does his best wily
bad guy impersonation as an American trafficking in liquor, hookers,
casinos and greed, failing all the way even as he tries to be
funny...but then, you see Salma in construction gear, putting
together a new deck by bending at impossible angles to get the job
done and you say "Thank you, Salma, for saving this motion picture."
You will even watch one of the more
anti-climactic endings in our recent history together, complete with
bad jewel heist cinematics and a completely illogical ending, and
you will STILL say "Thank you, Salma, for saving this motion
I'll give this to director Brett Ratner (the
"Rush Hour" films and
he knows how to keep you hooked, by giving us just a little Hayek at
the right moment. And, the island where much of the action
takes place is absolutely beautiful--it makes me think that I need
to move, but, wait a second, I can't do that. And, Brosnan may
have played this role before (most recently in
Thomas Crown Affair"), but he does a decent job with it and
never has to jump tall buildings in a single bound.
But, the fact is really quite simple--when
Hayek is onscreen, "After the Sunset" is at points quite a beautiful
film. When she's not around, neither is anything worthwhile.
Hence, a mixed bag!
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Bellview Rating System:
"Opening Weekend": This is
the highest rating a movie can receive. Reserved for movies that
exhibit the highest level of acting, plot, character development,
setting...or Salma Hayek. Not necessarily in that order.
"$X.XX Show": This price
changes each year due to the inflation of movie prices; currently,
it is the $9.50 Show. While not technically perfect, this is a
movie that will still entertain you at a very high level.
"Undercover Brother" falls into this category; it's no "Casablanca",
but you'll have a great time watching. The $9.50 Show won't win any
Oscars, but you'll be quoting lines from the thing for ages (see
"Matinee": An average movie
that merits no more than a $6.50 viewing at your local theater.
Seeing it for less than $9.50 will make you feel a lot better about
yourself. A movie like "Blue Crush" fits this category; you leave
the theater saying "That wasn't too bad...man, did you see that
Lakers game last night?"
"Rental": This rating
indicates a movie that you see in the previews and say to your
friend, "I'll be sure to miss that one." Mostly forgettable, you
couldn't lose too much by going to Hollywood Video and paying $3 to
watch it with your sig other, but you would only do that if the
video store was out of copies of "Ronin." If you can, see this
movie for free. This is what your TV Guide would give "one and a
"Hard Vice": This rating is
the bottom of the barrel. A movie that only six other human beings
have witnessed, this is the worst movie I have ever seen. A Shannon
Tweed "thriller," it is so bad as to be funny during almost every
one of its 84 minutes, and includes the worst ending ever put into a
movie. Marginally worse than "Cabin Boy", "The Avengers" or
"Leonard, Part 6", this rating means that you should avoid this
movie at all costs, or no costs, EVEN IF YOU CAN SEE IT FOR FREE!
(Warning: strong profanity will be used in all reviews of "Hard