Stone’s ‘Savages’ has no charms to soothe anyone
(MCT) — There’s a fine line between pulp and pretense with Oliver Stone. From his early directorial outing, 1981’s “The Hand” (Michael Caine loses his appendage, but it comes back, ferociously!), to his 1991 hallucinogenic rock bio “The Doors,” to his hyperactive homicidal-twosome movie, 1994’s “Natural Born Killers,” Stone has a tendency to inflate what is essentially genre fare with grandiosity, with portentous gab.
And when he’s not busy rewriting history (“Nixon,” “W.,” “JFK”) or examining war (“Platoon”) or football (“On Any Given Sunday”) or finance (“Wall Street”) or 9/11 (“World Trade Center”), the prolific filmmaker screeches his car wheels back onto B-movie turf: drugs, sex and guns.
Which is where “Savages,” adapted from the novel by Don Winslow, comes in. Opening with ominously shaky video of masked goons and cowering hostages, “Savages” is all about a trio of beautiful Laguna Beach pot dealers who run afoul of a Mexican cartel, and of the DEA.
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