Monday, August 20, 2012

A Review: Wrecked

"Fuck! I'm. . . FUCK!"
We almost think the name of the movie should be called "Goddamnit." It's accurate in regards for his bad luck and situation. Wouldn't be far off from what the title is ultimately suggesting.

The first thing we can see clearly is Adrien Brody's eyelid as it opens to reveal a weathered ball behind the skin. Then the camera shifts to a broken windshield and the dense green foliage beyond it. Eventually he comes fully to and gazes around. Beat to hammered shit would just about some up his appearance. Stuck in the front passenger seat of a car, he's wrecked it in the bottom of a ravine in the woods, some how. And yet he looks as if he doesn't have the slightest how he's there.

The man in the back seat is either unconscious, or, dead. Later, we find out he is not playing possum, and Brody is all alone. The driver is missing, we don't know about anyone else from the backseat. And that's just the beginning of his problems.

Brody's leg is pinned down by the dashboard and tugging it just won't do, it causes yelping, and all sorts of painful noises. Eventually, days go by, and he's not found the strength to extricate himself form the vehicle. He yanks things from his pockets, a mint, a receipt, no ID. He tries the man in the backseat he does not recognize, nor does he recognize his name from his driver's license either. It's clear now, Brody has amnesia.

What's worse is that a large mountain lion is stalking out the crash site, and chews on a fallen comrade yards away from the car. Good thing he found that .38 special under the driver's seat, and only he has four bullets left. Eventually, on day three or four, he gets the frustration he's needed and breaks free of the car. We then find out that leg his is in deed as bad as he's making it sound, or, maybe even worse. He ties a tourniquet on it, uses some wood as a splint and tries to secure himself. He's got a long journey.

He hears on the car's radio a deadly bank robbery was committed, and matches up a credit card he finds in the car as one of the perpetrators spoken by the newscaster. Is he Raymond Plazzy? That's what he tells himself, and starts receiving flashes of him pointing guns and robbing bank tellers. Ding, ding ding Johnny! The money in trunk is another great sign he's involved. Too bad Ray.

It's an ode to Brody's seemingly divine honesty as an actor to show us just about how harrowing you think this would actually be for someone. And he powers through the frames, or, crawls. He's no good with that bum leg, and spends the rest of the film crawling attempting to find safety, and ultimately a way out of the woods.

He doesn't look unlike a wounded animal, prime prey, low hanging fruit. And realizes this much at times, on the ready with his gun, and sometimes on watch for cracking wood, rustling leaves, the signs of a hunter. And then a new element arises. He finds a dog pal to mosey along with. Wouldn't ya know it?

I loved that damn dog, and maybe that was the point. Utrusting at first, but always curious about the crawly man and where he was headed. Eventually, they bond over some found beef jerky, and the dog becomes inseparable from him. Almost as a 'Wilson" to Brody's to "Chuck," they even play with a stick by a sightly and serene river. We almost forget how bad it is for him. Was it sent from above? Is it a guardian angel sent to lead him to salvation, or to death from exposure or the cougar, so Satin can add another to his stock?

Man verses nature. As old as time and always on the reinvent I suppose, some flashes of Cast Away come to mind, and not just the dog. We also see some of the dreariness of Aron Ralston/James Franco via 127 Hours. I won't tell you that it reaches the heights of why those films were so captivating, or how inventive they got with keeping you interested. Or that goes into more interesting territory with an escaped buddy from the car, and the film goes the way of The HuntedBecause, it simply doesn't. And eventually after much crawling, Brody makes us feel as if we're down there in the dirt with him and it's nearly as bad as you'd think. My elbows maybe even started to hurt after a while. I'm not sure.

I could have simply told you, and if you were in front of me I would have: "He crawls around grunting and cursing for a fuck-load of the movie, and then it's eventually over." And saved myself the trouble of writing 1,000-and-something words about this. But alas, then why bother writing at all? I love film, that's why.

Wrecked is one of three movies recently I can remember where 1 man is trapped, sealed impossibly and it's up to him to survive his ordeal. Buried with Ryan Reynolds who's always reliable in just about anything he does. The other is Brake with Stephen Dorff. Both involved terrorists from the middle east. Hmm, okay. Apparently Dorff didn't like the other much either from what he says. Thought that he could do it better. I'm not here to dispute that, I haven't seen it yet, so how fair would any argument be? And I won't say that Stephen Dorff isn't good at what he does either, because it is the quite the opposite in fact.

I like watching Adrien Brody, in fact, I love watching him. And I never skip the film he's in. Some past Oscar winners don't do much for the honor, some, trash it completely with the decisions they make afterwards. Thankfully, whenever see Brody, it's always in something we feel he's chosen for the right reasons, and certainly not the wrong ones. Say what you want about Adrien Brody, but he's always finding new, fresh ways to keep himself occupied in front of the camera.

And for that, I am always thankful.

Munki out.

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