Bait

"Bad"

Bait Review


Director Anthony Fuqua doesn't seem terribly interested in the plot of "Bait," a impotent "Enemy of the State" knock-off that reeks of a sloppy re-write designed to accommodate the comedy stylings of Jamie Foxx in the Will Smith-type role.

Fuqua's main focus is turning the picture into a resume-builder and he spends the whole two hours showing off his technique. Dripping with visual flair overkill, the chase scenes, stunts and explosions get the deluxe treatment. A 30-second sex scene is shot from about 20 angles. Even a throwaway speech Foxx gives about missing his father (it's just a line to get his ex-girlfriend in the sack) is filmed with four or five cameras -- one of them restlessly circling him as he mock-emotes -- and edited with slow-motion effects and multiple fade-ins and fade-outs.

"Lookie what I can do!" Fuqua seems to be saying, much as he did in "The Replacement Killers," Chow Yun-Fat's Hong-Kong-style American debut. "Please don't send me back to making music videos!"

All this style wouldn't seem quite so absurd if it were employed in a movie that had something else going for it. But "Bait" is an unduly dramatic, gimmicky movie, played out by second-tier actors chosen as being "close enough" to the actors Fuqua obviously wished he could afford.

Foxx (first choice Will Smith) is a small-time crook pinched for stealing prawns ("Not shrimp baby, prawns!") who shares a holding cell with a suspect in a daring $42 million gold heist at the Manhattan Federal Reserve. The suspect dies in custody, but not before giving Foxx a cryptic message about where he hid the gold from a sociopathic partner he double-crossed.

So an obstinate Treasury Department cop (a stoic David Morse) arranges to have Foxx surgically implanted with an "experimental" tracking device (without our hero's knowledge), then puts him out on the street, hoping he'll be found by the creepy-calm and ultra-violent mastermind behind the Reserve break-in (played by Doug Hutchison, the psycho prison guard in "The Green Mile," doing his very best to channel John Malkovich).

A team of about a dozen agents then watch Foxx go about his business (mostly trying to get his girlfriend back) on a multi-million dollar satellite system in a huge steel room with lots of video monitors, waiting for Hutchison to show up so they can bust him.

It's clear from the way Foxx's wisecracks are crowbarred into the script that "Bait" began life as some kind of conspiracy action-thriller that wouldn't have been very good anyway. But while Foxx might be capable of playing an appealing action-comedy hero (if he would stop with the sitcomy delivery and shave that ridiculous chin-strap facial hair), Fuqua is too busy showing off to waste his time on something as frivolous as characters or actors.

When Hutchison does show up, kidnapping Foxx's girlfriend (Kimberly Elise) and their toddler son, it's little more than a set-up for a count-down-to-explosion finale, timed by the ubiquitous digital read-out on a very big bomb.

"Bait" may look like a million bucks, but beneath the surface it's 100-percent pure hokum.



Bait

Facts and Figures

Run time: 93 mins

In Theaters: Thursday 20th September 2012

Budget: $30M

Distributed by: Anchor Bay Entertainment

Production compaines: Bait Productions

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 1.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 47%
Fresh: 15 Rotten: 17

IMDB: 5.2 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Antonine Fuqua

Starring: as Tina, as Jaimie, as Doyle, as Josh, Cariba Heine as Heather, as Ryan, as Kyle, as Naomi

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.