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Reviewing my DVD collection: Collateral

June 30, 2008

Far and away, my favorite Michael Mann film.

The cinematography in this film is amazing. The way Mann shoots LA is unlike anything I’ve ever seen in a movie. It’s as if the city itself is a character in the film and I’ve never seen anyone aside from Scorcese be able to do that with a film’s setting.

Tom Cruise turns in one of those performances that makes you wish that he wasn’t such a weirdo and aside from Oliver North’s Any Given Sunday, this is my favorite Jamie Foxx performance for its subtlety and its every-man believability. The film’s supporting performances are also really strong, starting with Mark Ruffalo and Bruce McGill, one of the business’ most underrated character actors. Oscar award-winner Javier Bardem also makes an appearance in the film and is electric during his few moments on screen.

The comparison I can most readily make with this film is to Michael Clayton. The film isn’t based on a mind-blowing premise but the performances, the writing and the way in which the film is made make it compelling and ultimately worth seeing.

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