Guy Ritchie says he got into the film business because he always wanted to direct entertaining movies. And his latest crime thriller "Revolver" is exactly that. It's heavily flawed and utterly ridiculous, but at least it's entertaining. The story, confusing as it is, focuses on Jake Green (Jason Statham), a quick-witted gambler who puts his life on the line when he insults Dorothy Macha (Ray Liotta), a powerful casino owner. After Macha orders his ruthless killers to take him out, Jake seeks shelter with two con men offering to protect him in return for his fortune.
"Revolver" is as chaotic as a massive shoot-out in which it's nearly impossible to figure out who's shooting whom. Ritchie's script is a total, pseudo-philosophical mess, digging deep into the intricacies of the human ego. Ritchie also plays around with certain rules and formulas to pull off the ultimate con, but the whole game concept is ludicrously over the top. Meanwhile, the characters spend most of the time tossing around wise rules instead of delivering a coherent exchange of dialogue. "You can only get smarter by playing a smarter opponent" or "The greatest enemy will hide in the last place you would ever look" are just two of a horde of examples. The film also ends with a major twist, but if you haven't lost track of things or even care enough to stay focused until the end, chances are you won't be surprised.
I initially expected more from the actors, but they're certainly not in their best shape. Jason Statham is always good at playing tough guys looking for trouble, and he's undoubtedly the only cast member to put on a good show as Jake Green. Ray Liotta struggles in the role of malicious casino tyrant, but the only intimidating thing is his underwear. He really could've worn more clothes. As for Andre Benjamin and Vincent Pastore, their shallow performances almost go unnoticed.
On a more positive note however, "Revolver" is incredibly fast-paced and action-loaded. No matter how confusing or ludicrous the plot really is, the movie is stuffed with hot pursuits and crazy shoot-outs, captured stylishly by cinematographer Tim Maurice-Jones. In the end, despite the crippled script, Ritchie's direction and vision give way for some extravagant but compelling sequences that will keep the entertainment boat afloat for 105 minutes. I recommend this flick to Ritchie fans who are glad he dumped "Swept Away" and returned to the action genre.