"We Own the Night"
Directed by James Gray.
Written by James Gray.
Starring Joaquin Phoenix, Mark Wahlberg, Eva Mendes and Robert
Release Year: 2007
Review Date: 10/11/07
My buddy Gordon and I went over to the local
multiplex for a free showing of "We Own the Night" this evening;
while not a bad film, I'm happy that I saw this puppy for free.
Gordon did mention before the film that we
have probably seen "We Own the Night" before as some other iteration
movies, but give "We Own the Night" this much: its execution is
strong. Joaquin Phoenix plays the shady connections guy,
Bobby, the owner of a Brooklyn nightclub that plays late '70s hits
in...1988 (go figure). His brother, Joseph (Mark Wahlberg),
heads up a NYC task force that is dealing with narcotics and just
happens to be profiling a Russian guy named Vadim (Alex Veadov), who
may have drug connections in the city. Some shit goes down,
some people get shot, and eventually, Bobby lends a hand to his cop
brother and his cop father (Robert Duvall), all while trying to keep
a grip on his nightclub and his hot "Puerto Rican" girlfriend, Amada
Nothing about "We Own the Night" is that
special. It's a very capable crime drama that has some laughs
and has three quality male leads who do their jobs just fine, even
if Wahlberg and Duvall have played their respective characters so
many times they probably didn't even bother reading the script
before agreeing to do this film. The crack house scene is like
a white version of the same scene from "New Jack City", the action
scenes barely raise a pulse, and Mendes can only wear so many
push-up bras in one film. But, despite this attempt at
mediocrity, "We Own the Night" is very watchable, and with our
packed house tonight, it was reasonably entertaining for most of its
run time. Sure, I don't have to ever see it again, but at
least the film got me in there and kept me somewhat riveted for two
hours. You really can't ask for much more than that, right?
Comments? Drop me a line at
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