REVIEW: Knight And Day

5 07 2010

What’s silly, somewhat corny and contrived, and stuffed to the gills with action?

That would be “Knight And Day.” But my real question is this – so what? It provides that shot of summer adrenaline that we all crave without the eye-rolling and moaning on the side. As a sort of hybrid action-romantic comedy, the movie favors the former (which is probably for the better), but the blend really does allow it to be entertaining for more than just the guys who light up inside watching something blow up.

We’re never really meant to take the movie seriously – well, at least Tom Cruise doesn’t, so I sure as heck didn’t. His rogue CIA agent Roy Miller is part insane, part parody of all the outrageous characters Cruise has played in nearly three decades on screen. And he’s as willing to make fun of himself and his career choices as he is to don a fat suit and bloated makeup. There’s plenty of Cruise being mysterious in the corner, playing with the sunglasses, delivering ridiculous lines, making corny romantic gestures, and running to the point where it looks painful. It’s his boundless playful energy that lifts “Knight And Day” off the ground.

And then there’s Cameron Diaz, whose June Havens is the average girl who happens to be dragged along for the ride with Miller. It’s a fun twist to see how someone normal would react to being thrown into the middle of an action movie, and she’s as game as Cruise. At every crazy turn the movie takes, she stands shocked and astonished – something that translates into good humor. Some people have called her sometimes awkward antics in the movie bad acting, but those people are overlooking the fact that it’s what the script called for!

In the summer of blockbuster backlash, it seems everyone wants an action movie with a plot that does more than tie together explosions. Well, “Knight and Day” has that as we try to figure out if Miller is a hero, a villain, or just plain crazy.  It’s more than enough to keep us occupied as they jetset from exotic locales like Wichita to dumps like Sevilla.  There’s about as much changing of scenery as there is scenery exploding, and if nothing else, the movie succeeds in making you want to travel the globe.

Someone who I spent a great deal of time with over the past week often described some movies as great “as long as you’re willing to lower your standards a bit.”  I’d say “Knight and Day” can easily fall into that category.  Don’t expect to be blown away and you can have a very enjoyable experience.  Everyone can use a little bit of silly fun every now and then.  B- /



One response

6 07 2010

It’s nice to see Tom Cruise taking himself less seriously. I think it started with Magnolia and since then he’s been more willing to play against type. He certainly went all out with Tropic Thunder and the amusing MTV skit. Knight and Day sounds like a lot of fun – I just hope I’m not let down by Cameron (better animated than live-action) Diaz.

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