Wednesday, 13 January 2010

Film Review: MAX PAYNE (2008)

Director: John Moore
Running time: 96 mins (approx)
Certificate (UK): 15

Watched on Sky+ Wednesday 13th January 2010.


Based on the video game of the same name, this film plots the efforts of detective Max Payne to find who murdered his wife and child. It is set in one of those dark comic book cities where everyone and everything is exaggerated, especially the violence.

Max Payne works in the cold case office of the police department during the day and at night he’s chasing up leads, trying to find who murdered his family three years previous. One night his enquiries lead him to a party where he meets Natasha Sax and her sister Mona, Natasha goes with him back to his apartment. The next morning Max is taken by his former partner, Alex Balder to a crime scene. Natasha has been brutally murdered and Max’s wallet has been found there. It’s clear that Max had nothing to do with the murder but he is now the prime suspect. Alex continues to investigate the murder and finds that a bird wing tattoo on Natasha’s arm is similar to that of one of Max’s wife’s murderers found dead at the scene. He tries to contact Max but can only get his voicemail. When Max finally gets the message he heads over to Max’s apartment only to find him dead. It’s a complicated plot with many twists and turns, I hope I’ve whetted your appetite…

Made in the familiar comic-book style, this film had the grim edgy look you’d expect. Some fine CGI work as well. The only thing that was wrong was the plot. I personally couldn’t connect with the cold Max and thus found it hard to sympathise with his plight. Having said that, there were decent performances from all of the major cast, Mark Wahlberg as Max Payne, Mila Kunis as Mona Sax, Beau Bridges as BB Hensley, Ludacris as Lt. Jim Bravura, Chris O'Donnell as Jason Colvin, Donal Logue as Det. Alex Balder and Olga Kurylenko as Natasha Sax.

As I’ve already said, the plot let this movie down, it looks very good, they’ve obviously spent a lot of time on the look of it. Unfortunately they didn’t take the same care with the plot and the dialogue. A shame because I was really looking forward to enjoying this film. Ah well, maybe next time around…

My score: 5.4/10

IMDb Site:
Official Site:

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