There Was a Time
Slevin (Josh Hartnett - The Black Dahlia) is not having the best of times; he caught his girlfriend cheating on him, lost his job and to top it off he was mugged, well things happen in threes. Having arrived at his friend Nick's (Sam Jaeger) New York apartment there is no sign of Nick so Slevin lets himself in and then meets Lindsey (Lucy Liu - Kill Bill: Vol. 2) his friendly neighbour. But then it all gets a little crazy for Slevin when some heavies kidnap him thinking he is Nick and take him to see The Boss (Morgan Freeman) who Nick owes money to and demands Slevin do a job for him. But after that Nick ends up going through the same thing where he is hauled in front of The Rabbi (Ben Kingsley), The Boss's enemy who also wants Slevin to do something for him.
"Lucky Number Slevin" is a lot of things; it is well acted, stylishly directed, snappy, at times violent whilst at others amusing but I didn't like it. Oh I can appreciate that it is a well produced movie but it is too well produced because the quirks, the style, the characters all end up being more important than the story. It becomes an overload on the senses with every single second of it coming across too perfected, from the wallpaper to the camera angles it is too full on.
Now the thing about "Lucky Number Slevin" is that it does have an entertaining storyline buried beneath all the style. In fairness it is one which right from the word go screams con as we meet Bruce Willis as Mr. Goodkat in an almost empty airport terminal which glistens in such a way it looks good but looks over done and so looks false. And so we have twists and turns which become even more twisted and turned as they end up engulfed in the quirks of style which become a distraction.
Aside from that well we have a good collection of Hollywood actors delivering the type of performances which are popular amongst mainstream audiences. From Bruce Willis to Sir Ben Kingsley they all deliver these large characters that exude charisma and confidence which makes them interesting in a quirky way as they fire off their snappy dialogue. There is no denying that these characters are entertaining but at the same time they are another layer of style which engulfs the movie and throws the actual storyline deeper down the pecking list.
What this all boils down to is that "Lucky Number Slevin" is a movie which I can appreciate because it wasn't just thrown together and has been considered and crafted. But it is a case of coming across as too considered and crafted to the point that the look, the actors, the characters, the camera work and the dialogue all end up more important than the actual storyline and it becomes an overload of style.