The diversity of opinions on both of these films has me intrigued. I’d love to see both of them, honestly, though more realistically, I will see neither until they’re on DVD.
I’m trying to think of the last great, yet kind of dumb, action movie I saw. Maybe Taken? I love movies in that vein, that never slow down long enough for you to question the illogicality or improbability of it all. Films that don’t overtly insult your intelligence, but at least set everything up in a coherent way, then toss enough twists and turns at you, hitting all the correct beats, to prove that they intimately understand the requirements of their genre without any of it really mattering. In other words, dumb, but in a smart way.
(On a side note, it bugs the heck out of me when people can’t reconcile the notion that a movie can be both dumb and smart. I was just reading a review of Taken on the IMDb in which one of the guy’s major complaints was that Neeson’s character had to break a window to get into the apartment from which his daughter had been abducted–“wouldn’t the kidnappers have left the door unlocked?”, the reviewer says (paraphrased). Talk about missing the point. Who really gives a half a shit about that?)
Salt seems to fit that bill, but I don’t know…a lot of times when people go strongly one way or the other, you just end up feeling disappointed when it turns out to be something in between. I’d be lying if I said that Roger Ebert’s four-star review didn’t raise an eyebrow, since I was already inclined to want to see it.
At the same time, I’ve unapologetically enjoyed all of the Predator films, and I like the simple premise of Predators, so it’s difficult to imagine how I could be disappointed. It’s bizarre to me reading reviews of Predators, in which the reviewers will harp upon the film for having weak characterization or something. As if the original Predator film had been penned by Shakespeare. It’s a bunch of bad-asses in a jungle being hunted by alien predators. What the hell did you expect? Ordinary People?
It would be nice if you could buy an all-day pass to the movie theater.