What To Look Forward To: “Green Zone”

4 11 2009

A scant five days after the best movies of 2009 are crowned at the Academy Awards, a movie will be released that could have been among those.  “Green Zone” was slated for release this year, but the decision was made to push it back to 2010.  This was probably for financial reasons as so many great movies get lost in the heap during the month of December, and this year has taught us that a movie can make a nice chunk of change in the early months of the year.

“Green Zone” reunites the versatile Matt Damon, who at the time of release could be fresh off an Oscar win or nomination for either “The Informant!” or “Invictus,” with Paul Greengrass, director of the final two installments of the Bourne trilogy.  But Greengrass is capable of making something other than an epic action movie; he was nominated for Best Director at the Academy awards in 2006 for his work on “United 93.”  Damon’s character Roy Miller is a U.S. Army officer in the volatile Green Zone region, the center of international presence in Baghdad, who discovers that the CIA is working directly in opposition to his efforts to remove terrorist leaders.  In order to do what he feels is the greater good, he goes rogue.  Featuring an ensemble cast including Brendan Gleeson, Jason Isaacs, and Oscar nominees Greg Kinnear and Amy Ryan, “Green Zone” can hopefully provide awards-level entertainment in the fairly barren winter months.

However, the movie being set in Iraq could hamper the film’s receipts.  There has yet to be any bonanza made off a movie set in the Middle East, and only recently has their been a movie, “The Hurt Locker,” that has opened to widespread critical acclaim (although I loved “The Kingdom” … never have I felt so patriotic).  That movie focused more on characters and not on action, and if the same applies to “Green Zone,” it should do fine.  Universal put out two trailers for the movie this week.  The domestic trailer makes it look more like the “Bourne” movies with plenty of action, while the international trailer focuses more on the plot.  I embedded the international trailer here because if you have read this blog at all, you know my main concern is story.  A side note/quick pondering, does this mean that Universal thinks that Americans only want action and no plot?  Whatever the case may be for “Green Zone,” I’m sold.

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