Momentum

"OK"

Momentum Review


With a plot so thin that it's barely there, this sleek South African action thriller is surprisingly entertaining simply because the cast is allowed to chomp merrily on the scenery as they try to torment and kill each other. And even though the film's tone is relentless machismo, this is a rare thriller with a female leading character. So there's a bit of attitude and wry humour to undermine the otherwise sadistic violence.

It opens in Cape Town with a ludicrously over-planned bank heist that goes wrong simply because the robbers are all hothead thugs. The gang leader is Alex (Olga Kurylenko), and her clash with one of her cohorts leaves her team in disarray. She's also on the run from Mr. Washington (James Purefoy), the viciously swaggering henchman of top American boss the Senator (Morgan Freeman). It quickly becomes clear that Washington isn't trying to recover the diamonds stolen from the bank vault; he wants a mysterious memory stick instead. After Alex turns to a cohort (Brendan Murray) and a former love-rival (Lee-Anne Summers) for help, she leads Washington on a spectacularly grisly cat and mouse chase across the city.

Cameraman-turned-director Stephen Campanelli certainly knows how to make a movie that looks achingly cool. There isn't a moment when anyone moves or speaks like a normal human being: they strut, pose, shout, leer, scowl and taunt. And of course they all look great doing it. Kurylenko is a steely presence at the centre of the action, with a character intriguing enough to hold the interest even if Campanelli hadn't forced her to do most of her biggest scenes in a state of undress. Purefoy is clearly having a great time deliciously playing with his character's verbose speeches and grisly actions. And even Freeman gets to chew on some scenery in his few scenes.

Still, it's difficult to engage with a movie that's this superficial. There isn't a hint of subtext anywhere, which leaves the film feeling like it's got nothing at all on its mind. Sure, there are some nice plot turns, lively action and energetic performances, but they seem about as important to the movie as the whizzy camerawork, crashing editing style and elaborate stuntwork. And without even a whiff of an underlying point, everything about the movie feels gratuitous. So while it's snappy, funny and grisly enough to keep us entertained, it's also utterly forgettable. Except as a calling card for the visual skills of Campanelli, who clearly wants a big Hollywood job next.



Momentum

Facts and Figures

Genre: Dramas

Run time: 96 mins

In Theaters: Friday 16th October 2015

Budget: $20M

Production compaines: Thaba Media, Azari Media

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5

IMDB: 5.5 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Stephen Campanelli

Producer: Anton Ernst, Donald A Barton

Starring: as Senator, as Alex Farraday, as Mr. Washington, Sabine Palfi as Newscaster, Karl Thaning as Doug MacArthur, Dylan Edy as Black Hat, Lee-Anne Summers as Penny, Grant Roberts as Secret Service Agent, as Amphetamine

Contactmusic


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.