American Made (2017)

In the late 1970s, pilot Barry Seal (Tom Cruise) is approached by the CIA to take aerial reconnaissance photos over South America’s less-than-stable regimes. Picked up by a drug cartel after stopping to refuel, Barry might be forgiven for thinking he’s in hot water – but instead, the cartel offers him a ton of cash to use his CIA status to help smuggle their drugs back into the USA.

Playing both sides keeps Barry a wealthy man, and indeed, the most fun moments come as the character struggles to find places to stash his cash. However, while his life is on the up, you can’t help but know there’s likely to be a cliff-drop at some point – and possibly no plane to keep Barry aloft.

This is a fun movie, no doubt, but I have to admit to being a little bored during the opening half hour or so. I can only suggest that perhaps the film makers left in a few too many of the “based on a true story” details at the expense of pace. Still, things do get more exciting as the film progresses, although there was just a sense of predictability for me.

It’s an odd time for cinema, methinks: I seem to spend my time rating movies as slightly-better-than-average, but either talking up ones that have been otherwise slated (Dark Tower, Valerian, Hitman’s Bodyguard) or finding myself disappointed with things that sounded like they were doing better (Atomic Blonde). This, sadly, falls into the latter category: high hopes of fun, turned out just a little ‘meh’.

That said, it is very well made, and the actors all seem to be having fun. There are a few stylistic additions, from the 70s-esque opening credits to a few fun maps animations, which I thought added something positive in small doses. Oh, and try to count future presidents 😉

Overall, a decent enough, fun flick, but I personally thought it took a while to get the wing flaps up and get going.

Released: 25th August 2017
Viewed: 26th August 2017
Running time: 115 minutes
Rated: 15

My rating: 7/10

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2 thoughts on “American Made (2017)

  1. I am very picky about what films I choose to see in the cinema and what to leave for DVD release – I think you’ve saved me a lot of money so far this year by convincing me to wait a bit!

    I think cinema is best for *spectacle* – and from what you’ve said about this (and Atomic Blonde, and others), I suspect it’s not spectacular enough for me – yet I still want to see it, because it looks like great fun. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aw, Terry – saying my reviews are useful is the nicest comment ever 🙂 Absolutely agree on the spectacle thing – Atomic Blonde was probably the closes of the ‘hmm’ movies for that, but yup, this while good fun wouldn’t be hurt much by a smaller screen, I think. Oh, and if there’s ever anything you’re on the fence about and are free on a Tuesday or Wednesday, ask me how you get in for free 😉

      Liked by 1 person

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