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"The Way of the Gun"

Directed by Christopher McQuarrie.
Written by Christopher McQuarrie ("The Usual Suspects").
Starring Ryan Phillippe, Benicio Del Toro, Taye Diggs and Nicky Katt.
Release Year:  2000 
Review Date:  10/1/00


Sadly, the most underrated movie of the year will be this one, which no one went to go see and I am shocked that this is the case.  Written and directed by the same man who wrote the classic "The Usual Suspects", the movie follows two career criminals (Ryan Phillipe and Benicio Del Toro) as they kidnap a surrogate mother and are tracked by two bodyguards (Taye Diggs and Nicky Katt) intent on getting the girl back.  The story is surprisingly good, Taye Diggs is a badass and the gunfire is the loudest I have ever heard in a motion picture.  I mean, deafening.  James Caan shows up for a Yoda-like cameo and delivers some pretty good lines.  And, the supporting characters in this movie actually have something to say, not just things to advance the lead characters' plotlines.  It is too bad that no one saw this one...but, do yourself a favor and check it out when it comes to home video.

Rating:  $8.25 Show


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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 "Office Space"). 

"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, 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 half stars." 

"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 Vice"-rated movies.)

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The "fine print":
All material by Justin Elliot Bell for SMR/Bellview/ except where noted
1999-2009 Justin Elliot Bell This site was last updated 01/08/09