The promoters of this movie knew exactly what they had on their hands with this one. While the coffee-shop chat in Heat is discussed en masse by film critics and students the world over, that “classic” scene is about to be destroyed by Righteous Kill.
De Niro and Pacino may indeed be “the most acclaimed actors of our time”, but its the equivalent of Maradona and Pele playing a game of soccer on the same team. Yes, you’ll probably pay good money to see it, but more out of curiosity, because you know they’re not going to be good, not by today’s standards.
What was De Niro’s last good film? You could argue The Good Shepard, but he was hardly in it. Meet The Parents/Fockers? Not really. Jackie Brown, maybe? Okay, but again, he was hardly in it, and that was back in 1997. Between now and then we’ve had Stardust, Arthur And The Invisibles, Hide And Seek, Shark Tale, Godsend, Analyze This/That, Showtime, The Score, 15 Minutes, Men Of Honor, Adventures Of Rocky And Bullwinkle, Flawless….. That is ALOT of crap.
Does Pacino fair any better? Well, lets see. 88 Minutes is his latest one, but as of yet, not recieved a cinematic release (and its directed by the same guy who is directing Righteous Kill, so that bodes well). To be fair, we only have to go back as far as 2002 for Al’s last good performance in a good film; Insomnia. But he was equal amounts of crap on his recent CV: Ocean’s 13 (not necessarily a bad film, he was just bad in it), Two For The Money, The Merchant Of Venice, Gigli, The Recruit, S1m0ne….. not as bad as De Niro, but still, not exactly good for Pacino.
And behind the camera? We have Russell Gewirtz, the writer of (as the poster so proudly claims) Inside Man. But thats it. And then, for director Jon Avnet, we go old school:
Yay!: The War
Oh?: Fried Green Tomatoes, Up Close & Personal
Bah!: Red Corner, 88 Minutes (as mentioned earlier, yet to recieve a cinematic release, but CorrectOpinion caught a press screening, and it is awful)
So there we have it. Its not due out til September 12th 2008, but there have been some early test screenings. And the early word? Not good. Appearantly De Niro spends most of the movie trying to be an action man, and Pacino’s character is depressed, probably because he doesn’t get to shout once! Not even once! What is the world coming to?