Sunday, August 08, 2010
Luke Wilson shines in an otherwise annoying film about the introduction of "porn for pay" on the Internet.
The story is "Inspired by real events" but inevitably creative license runs amok. The film is all over the place, at once comedic and then deadly serious. It's filled with stock characters like Russian mobsters, middle eastern terrorists, shady lawyers, porn stars and kindly FBI agents. At the center of it all is "Jack Harris", the problem solving business man with the brains to sort out everyone's problems and get rich quick.
Mr. Wilson does a great job as the family man, Harris, who succumbs to the lure of big money, sex and power only to find it's what what he really wants. Hmmm, haven't we seen this plot before...in about a gazillion movies? While his acting is terrific, the story is annoying and grating on the nerves. The action constantly moves back in forth in time confusing the viewer and the constant narration by Mr. Wilson really gets under your skin (no pun intended). A good script wouldn't need the voiceover to explain everything happening on screen.
The film also stars Giovanni Ribisi and Gabriel Macht as the two drug fueled friends that start the Internet porn business and James Caan as the aforementioned shady lawyer. While all the acting is good, it's not enough to sustain your interest in all these unlikeable characters.
At it's root, this little known history lesson is a cautionary warning of excess. Let this review be a cautionary warning as well.