Movie Review Archive - X
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Hollywood is desperate to find a new action star and a franchise vehicle for that role. Today's young multi-ethnic audience wants to root for someone whom they can relate to. Someone who rejects authority, abhors conformity and knows how to party. Vin Diesel (The Fast And The Furious, Shaving Ryan's Privates) is young, tattooed, strong, good looking, in your face and most importantly, culturally ambiguous. Is he Black? Is he White? Is he Hispanic? Is he a Jew? Only his scalp-dresser knows for sure. XXX is pretty much what you would expect. It is louder, more violent and less subtle than our parent's spy movies. But then, everything in our present culture compares that way to our recent past. Think of XXX as James Bond meets The X-Games. The ladies are trashy instead of glamorous but what do you expect? Is Vin Diesel the first of a new breed of Hollywood action stars or just the latest in a long line that includes Douglas Fairbanks, Humphrey Bogart, Sean Connery and Harrison Ford? Style over substance now more than ever. Welcome to the 21st century. 113 minutes.
XXX: State Of The Union (PG13)
Samuel L. Jackson, head of a super secret branch of the NSA, convinces Ice Cube that helping the government would be better than prison time. Cube's character will become the new XXX. XXX is sort of like America's version of 007 except without all that class and sophistication. The Secretary Of Defense (Willem Defoe) is planning on killing the President, Vice President and The Speaker Of The House, thereby taking over the presidency. Doesn't the name Willem Dafoe look like a typo? State Of The Union, the second film in the XXX franchise (the first starred Vin Diesel), serves up the worst in current American culture. It is loud, violent, misogynistic, dumb and completely lacking in subtlety. In other words, it will most likely be a hit. 101 minutes.