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Review Smokin' Aces (2006): A flawed mess but very enjoyable!

 genre: action, crime

The first hour I wanted to give up watching this movie. The story was going nowhere. Suddenly the pace picks up and things get interesting. 

In the beginning the story is a bit chaotic. It is clear something is brewing. You know there is going to be a climax. The great climax and the wonderful performances by the actors make up for the confusing first 80 minutes. Smokin' Aces reminded me of True Romance. It had the same ambiance, only it lacked the humor True Romance did have. This is a big failure in my opinion. Because the lack of humor makes this movie too damn serious! It is quite difficult to like or care for the characters because we don't really get to know them well. We get very little to none background on the characters. This is a shame, the characters seem to be very colorful. Maybe this is done on purpose to keep things mysterious. But for me it would have been more effective if we knew more about the motives from the characters. The reason the movie stays compelling because of the actors who with some exceptions perform superbly. The conclusion with the little twist is redundant and not necessary for your enjoyment. Joe Carnahan tries too hard to be Quentin Tarantino or Guy Ritchie without the knowledge or expertise to back it up. But compared to his later films Smokin' Aces is definitely one of his best next to The Grey.

Once you are aware this is a flawed mess and not some masterpiece you will be able to enjoy it a whole lot better.

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