Excerpt from the CONTRABAND script:
“What the f-?$@!! Your f$&@king brother is a f#%^up who can’t f~£+king do anything. F&!$ing f-0&$-ity F$&K!!!”
(Disclaimer: not an actual line from the movie. But it’s pretty close.”
If you are sensitive about language, stay far away from this one. It’s rated R for violence, brief drug use and pervasive language, but boy is it pervasive, with every sentence peppered with F-bombs.
Besides the potty mouths, director Baltasar Kormákur decided to film the entire thing from a “human-like perspective,” meaning there isn’t a steady shot in the entire movie. The camera’s constantly jostling back and forth between the characters, making close-ups then pulling back, making the background blurry then sharply coming back into focus. Meaning you might get motion sickness if you’re sitting towards the front. Sit in the back or don’t go at all.
The plot line is pretty straight forward. “To protect his brother-in-law from a drug lord, a former smuggler heads to Panama to score millions of dollars in counterfeit bills.” There you go.
There are some funny bits scattered in there, but definitely not enough to call it a comedy. There’s guns, shooting, cars ramming, coke, uncut bills, drugs and filth. Everything a smuggling movie dreams to be.
Kate Beckinsale is OK. But I prefer her as a brunette vampire Lycan-slayer.
Mark Wahlberg is also OK. He acts like he really does love his family.
Giovanni Ribisi, most recently seen The Rum Diary, was the stand-out for me. He completely embodied a scummy, cold-blooded and hearted ruthless drug lord of the slums. And yes, that is a compliment.
We also see Diego Luna as a different person. Normally he looks like a sweet young guy, but here he is another ruthless drug lord, but in Panama. He’ll gun you down and you best believe it.
Ben Foster (from Flash Forward!! Anyone??) does some very good work in this movie. He comes in second after Ribisi.
So what do I think?
Skip it. If you’ve seen Gone in 60 Seconds or The Italian Job, or any kind of dirty-handed heist movie, you know what’s going to happen.
What do you think?
Do you agree or did you think it was awesome?