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

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...

The Belko Experiment Movie Review

The Belko Experiment Movie Review

The kill-or-die scenario that this movie hinges on isn't something new; it's been used in...

The Fate of the Furious Movie Review

The Fate of the Furious Movie Review

With the more dumbed-down title Fast & Furious 8 outside of North America, this overcrowded...

A Quiet Passion Movie Review

A Quiet Passion Movie Review

British writer-director Terence Davies (The Deep Blue Sea) is an expert at digging beneath the...

Advertisement
The Sense of an Ending Movie Review

The Sense of an Ending Movie Review

Julian Barnes' Booker Prize-winning novel is adapted into a remarkably intelligent, gently involving film anchored...

The Boss Baby Movie Review

The Boss Baby Movie Review

There isn't a lot of subtlety in this madcap animated comedy, which is more aimed...

City of Tiny Lights Movie Review

City of Tiny Lights Movie Review

After the latest incarnation of Dredd, director Pete Travis shifts gears drastically for this complex...

Going in Style Movie Review

Going in Style Movie Review

This is only technically a remake of the iconic 1979 film starring movie icons George...

Graduation Movie Review

Graduation Movie Review

Romanian filmmaker Cristian Mungiu (4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days) recounts another staggeringly detailed...

Ghost in the Shell Movie Review

Ghost in the Shell Movie Review

This sci-fi thriller is so visually stunning that it deserves to be mentioned in the...

Free Fire Movie Review

Free Fire Movie Review

Basically a 90-minute shoot-out, there isn't a lot to this movie. British filmmaker Ben Wheatley...

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.