TCapturing actors 55+, from playing my dad to playing my dad who is also a retired hitman, has been a boon to the Neesons, Odenkirks and Costners family, but less so for their female counterparts, going from mom to mom who She is also married to a retired hitman. Things seem to little bit It’s improved this year as more women of the same age are allowed to join the kind of movement that has traditionally left them unarmed, with Michelle Yeoh and Viola Davis fighting their way to box office success (before Jamie Lee Curtis returns to “finish” Michael Myers next month) And now, inevitably, Netflix is bringing the back with a more traditional vehicle, this time for Academy Award winner Allison Janney.
If his name isn’t just Lou, it’s an eerily silly title that’s hard to say out loud with any vague sense of excitement (just try it – Lou, Lou, if). It’s also sad that it’s hard to watch while feeling any vague sense of excitement or any sense of anything, really, a movie that works best as an exciting concept – Allison Janney not taken – From the real thing.
You play Janie, I’ve Got This, Lo, living a rude, self-sufficient, lonely, or present, in the woods, haunted by something or someone, a purposely simple life until things get complicated one night during a particularly dramatic storm. The daughter of her close neighbor, Hannah (Gurney Smollett), was, we got this, takenAnd she needs Lou’s help to find her.
Who is Lou? What is if? but most importantly, Why Is it lo? I have no idea after a choppy but mostly unremarkable 107 minutes, a movie that doesn’t deserve both Janie’s talents and our attention. Lou succinctly said it was really about something before she took off the veil from our eyes, raised her hands and shrugged her shoulders. Originally set in Paramount with production by J.J. Abrams, the film is an unflattering origin tale given most of the snooze that circulates on Netflix, but why this script drew such attention is perhaps the film’s greatest mystery.
Initially billed as Thelma & Louise with Taken, it’s a bit like Sleeping with the Enemy and Rambo meets Taken but unfortunately doesn’t come close to the fun it might make it seem. The missing child is captured by an abusive ex, played with soap menace that quickly fades to nothing by Logan Marshall Green, and scenes following the initial storm, forcing the women to grow up together, are effectively involved. Director Anna Forster, whose TV credits include genre fare like Outlander and Westworld, knows how to set events and set the mood (efficiency at a basic level is still very important in the streaming world), and when Maggie Cohn and Jack Stanley’s script keeps things simple, there’s Some simple fun to be had. Janney is, as ever, a true pro, and her exhausting sarcasm, often used for comedic effect, makes her a reasonably haunted heroine, and Lou allows for some of the quieter, more weighty moments that her other work doesn’t always provide for her.
But there’s a boring and derailed twist that complicates and confuses, turning what could have been a tight little chase movie into something elusive and a lot harder to get involved in. It turns the movie into a lame melodrama and takes us away from the action, a misguided attempt to trade our adrenaline for emotion. Janie sells it regardless, but in the end she walks wounded in the literal and figurative sense. Lou’s sheer presence may be a step in the right direction for women over 50 in action movies, but it’s a wrong step everywhere else.
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