Image: Fox Searchlight Pictures
“Adult fairy tale” is one of those suspicious terms often used to give more credit to a silly premise than it deserves — but every now and then, it’s actually used to defend a fantastical movie stuffy mainstream adults would likely dismiss otherwise, like 2006’s Pan’s Labyrinth.
That triple Oscar-winner was directed by jack-of-all-trades Guillermo del Toro. It was the most powerful filtering of del Toro’s visions of an already-storied career. After a Hellboy sequel, Pacific Rim, and Crimson Peak, del Toro has now returned to that unnerving space between genres, crafting another adult fairy tale that reaches out to childhood emotions within audiences while still incorporating severed fingers and a dead cat.
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Photo: Sony Pictures Releasing
The best male performance last year was Michael Shannon’s lead role in the criminally under-seen Take Shelter. Shannon is at the stage of his career when he’s recognizable by most but identifiable by few. His performance in Take Shelter was finely nuanced, a poignant and mysterious look at a man who is either becoming prophetic or schizophrenic. It was a brilliant piece of acting, earning him numerous accolades and awards. Shannon firmly proved he is one of the most gifted actors of our time.
This is not that performance. Shannon throws all subtlety out the window in Premium Rush. This is a movie built for one purpose and one purpose only — fun — and Shannon takes full advantage of the carefree environment to ham it up and chew the scenery harder than anyone probably has since Kevin Spacey in Superman Returns.
Premium Rush is an action movie that doesn’t try to be anything more what it is. It’s not concerned with labyrinthine twists or evocative emotion; it just wants to entertain you. Continue reading →