Friday, July 28, 2006

eyeCandy: Miami Vice (2006) 3/5

The Miami Vice movie is a lot like a really good episode of the original Miami Vice TV show. And although it's very stylish and gritty (some of it filmed Dominican Republic), it never quite seems to be able to gear up to being a really good movie. The plot is typical of the 1980's ground-breaking television series this is based on: the lead detectives go undercover with lots of drugs, guns, and women around (this time posing as professional international drug smugglers). Things go wrong, people get shot, and in the end its just another day being on the vice squad of America's sin city.

Michael Mann's direction is certainly very competent but, at almost two and a half hours, I think there could have been some additional editing done to good effect. Colin Farrell and Jamie Foxx were certainly appropriate choices to take over from Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas' classic vice detectives, Sonny Crockett and Rico Tubbs, but neither of them can quite break through the ice that keeps this incarnation from being a great movie (as an aside, Colin Farrell's Irish accent creeps out every once in a while, which sort of breaks me out of believing he's Sonny Crockett (or Don Johnson)).

I grew up when TV's Miami Vice was the coolest, grittiest thing you could see on television, and I'm not quite sure how or if that affects my view of this movie. I think I'll probably go back and try to determine when Miami Vice was at its height and then rewatch a couple of those seasons (the first two are out on DVD - the rest are held up b/c of music rights, etc.), because I remember it as being a really good and original show (the unprecedented $1.3 million per television episode budget might have helped separate it from the pack back then). In any case, I was happy to see this movie and, if they can haul in the running time a bit, I'd probably go see the next one. Not great, but frankly good enough for a popcorn flick.
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7/28/2006 09:08:00 PM  

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