Review: Even Bardem's hair can't lift 'Counselor'
This photo released by Twentieth Century Fox shows Michael Fassbender, left, as The Counselor, and Javier Bardem, as Reiner, in the film, "The Counselor." (AP Photo/Copyright Twentieth Century Fox, Kerry Brown)
Somewhere deep into "The Counselor," I found myself mesmerized by a metaphysical monologue from one of the characters — someone who sounded strikingly similar to my college philosophy professor — and trying to figure out exactly what he meant, and how it related to the person he was saying it to.
But then I realized I had more basic questions, as in, wait, who IS this guy? Where did he come from? Did I miss something?
If that kind of experience would bother you, be forewarned. There's lots and lots of talk in Ridley Scott's latest film, which boasts a high-powered cast and also the first original screenplay by author Cormac McCarthy. But that talk doesn't always clarify what's happening onscreen. Sometimes, it seems like it's coming from another movie, or somewhere else entirely.
This photo released by Twentieth Century Fox shows Cameron Diaz, left, as Malkina, and Penelope Cruz, as Laura, in the film, "The Counselor." (AP Photo/Copyright Twentieth Century Fox, Kerry Brown)
And then, to move on to simpler stuff, this movie also features what's gotta be the yuckiest sex scene in recent cinematic history. Talk of this scene, which unites actress Cameron Diaz and, um, a car windshield, will undoubtedly sell some tickets. But just how it fits in with the film's more metaphysical themes isn't immediately clear. There must be a connection. I'm just still trying to figure it out.
One connection that will be obvious to all, though, is with "No Country For Old Men," the 2007 Oscar winner based on a novel by McCarthy. That film also dealt with the harsh Texas border region and a drug deal gone wrong — way, way wrong — and the violent consequences of greed and foolish risk. It also featured Javier Bardem in a crazy haircut.