Malkovich + The Ageing Process
They're bad. They're old. They shoot guns. They shoot guns whilst being old as fuck. Movie magic mate. If you find these concepts hilarious then Red is a movie for you. Me, I find these concepts hilarious in a way that makes me pity myself, I'll laugh whilst my soul is screaming. And while by any definition Red is a bad movie, and by god Red is a bad movie. Its lazy, predictable, feeble and all other words you could conceivably relate to something being half-assed. But I'd be lying if the thing didn't have a laissez-faire charm. And seeing Bruce Willis, John Malkovich and Helen Mirren rinse the shit out of legions of anonymous canon fodder is not without its appeal I suppose.
Its all very tongue-in-cheek, which frankly is an all too predictable and easy way to play it. The concept is so knowingly ridiculous that perhaps a little more sincerity wouldn't have gone a miss. Perhaps an indication that anybody involved in this movie is invested in this movie, but instead we get several acting legends turning up on lackadaisical autopilot, taking their pay cheque and doing the least amount of work possible. I think the most guilty of this is Bruce Willis, who not only doesn't turn up, but just looks bored. Like really bored. Like I'm thinking of how best to refurbish the faucets in my third guest bathroom bored. The body of Bruce Willis turns up, but the man is in absentia. It doesn't help that the movie's plot is pretty much pathetic, a one-note barely there conspiracy that would make 24 blush. But the movie knows that if it has John Malkovich being crazy and Helen Mirren with a RPG then it really doesn't have to be a movie, the sight gags will carry it alone. And as much as I want to tell it to fuck off, it kind of has a point. The Malkovich be crazy moments are funny, and while they are in the broadest terms possible and Malkovich clearly could give less of a shit, he's one of those actors who is born to play insane.
I recommend you watch the trailer, because that way you get the benefit of Malkovich shooting people whilst being hilariously aged without having to sit around while Red barely pretends to be an actual movie, and not just secretly a skit for Saturday Night Live. For wasting such a talented cast (I didn't even mention Mary Louise Parker, Morgan Freeman, Ernest Borgnine, Richard Dreyfuss and Karl Urban) and coasting with 80 million dollars of somebody's money, Red is kind of reprehensible. But there's moments to enjoy I suppose.