Retro Review: Revolver

As far as I know, this film may never see the light of day in North America. That could be a blessing.

Guy Ritchie burst on the scene as the director of “Snatch” which was such a great little film that practically redefined the whole “Euro-gangster” film genre. Since then Ritchie married Madonna, wrote and directed his wife in the 2002 utter disaster “Swept Away”.

“Revolver” was supposed to be his return to greatness. It has a dynamic cast led by Jason Statham and Ray Liotta. So what happened?

The story opens as gambler Jake Green (Jason Statham) is released from prison. Green has a troubled past that is linked to a dark underworld headed by casino mogul Dorothy Macha (Ray Liotta). Green’s claim to fame is that he is very lucky that is until he is diagnosed with only 3 days to live.

As a sort of redemption for his troubled life, Green teams up with some two lone sharks to start giving away the fortune he has accumulated during his career. Green doesn’t exactly understand how that will help him but his luck seems to point him that way.

The film gets more convoluted and complicated from there as Macha and Green continue to butt heads. The film seems to explore redemption, darkness in our spirit, mortality and luck. What it doesn’t do is hold our interest.

The film is so confusing and dialogue heavy that I had a hard time deciphering the significance of each character and the message the film was trying to convey.

There were some scenes and isolated characters that I liked but for the most part I wanted to cry in my hands. Ritchie has always been good at developing smaller characters with extremely interesting names. In every one of his films there were always smaller supporting characters I adored even if the film wasn’t that great. “Revolver” definitely follows in that tradition.

“Revolver” never had a chance to be grand or great because it lacked a distinct vision. There are so many elements of millions of ideas but no direct way to convey the any of the ideas even if they were brilliant or ill-conceived. In other words, it’s an utter mess.

1.5 out of 5

So Says the Soothsayer.

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