You went from Beyonce to Bigfoot in six hours

As an everyday, red-blooded, God-fearing young man, there's nothing I like more than watching people get killed in a variety of eccentric ways - be it the simple drive-by, a playing card to the face, Wolverine-style stabbings, flamethrowers, chainsaws, surface-to-air rocket launchers and so on. To that extent, Joe Carnahan's new film Smokin' Aces really delivers. The action is explosive, intense and pretty relentless. The premise is pretty solid: put one stoned magician in a hotel suite, put a million dollar price tag on him, and let all manner of psychos battle it out with the Feds for his head. Or more particularly, his heart. Kind of like SWAT, but with good actors.

Unfortunately, there's far too much going on in Smokin' Aces to really love it. There are hundreds of characters, the intricacies of the plot are too fine to keep up with and the big reveal at the end will leave you confused and frustrated. Unlike other reviewers, it doesn't really bother me that the film is pretty much entirely derivative of Tarantino/Ritchie, because it still looks great. There is just zero substance - no characters that stand out, no emotional connections, no reason to really care, no satisfying payoff. Some great stylized action set-pieces, but that's it. It's a real disappointment after Narc, which was ace.

Oh, and Good Weather for Airstrikes can answer your question "What does the new Maximo Park single 'Our Velocity' sound like?" so go there straight away.


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