This is one of those reviews that will not take too much thought. I say this with some hesitation because I do like the feature film, Snitch, but it does not provide me with anything new to write about since so much is revealed in the movie trailers. What the public has seen in advance of the film release, at theaters, on television or the Internet is what they get. For anyone who has missed the trailers somehow, Jason Collins (Rafi Gavron) accepts an overnight express package from his “friend” and gets burned by his mistake. Single mom, Sylvie Collins (Melina Kanakaredes) calls in her affluent former husband/Jason’s father, John Matthews (actor/producer Dwayne Johnson) and the action begins.
The film is directed by Ric Roman Waugh who co-wrote with Justin Haythe, known for films including The Clearing, Revolutionary Road and The Lone Ranger to be released later this year. If this film is “Based On a True Story” or “Inspired by true events,” then the writers accurately capture how an affluent businessman uses his contacts in the community to get to the office of the local US District Attorney in charge of his son’s case. No surprise there. Joanne Keeghan (Susan Sarandon) does give Matthews a set of barriers and then a challenge when he is asking for ways to spring his son from facing the ten years in prison he has been sentenced to (despite that the soon to be college student did not distribute the contents of the package he received).
I do admire the stunt drivers on the rigs for all the action scenes involving a high speed chase by heavily armed cartel members who want their money back and the driver dead. A couple of those scenes tended to make me uneasy, especially when the rig jackknifed. I have had one do so very close to me on IH 35 and the memory in 1983 will stay with me forever.
The film boasts of a diverse cast and for that I am pleased, despite the fact that Benjamin Bratt portrays a drug lord, Juan Carlos ‘El Topo’ Pintera. I know he is much better than that, but a job is a job. Among the other cast members are Barry Pepper as Agent Cooper, Jon Bernthal as Daniel James, Michael Kenneth Williams as Malik and Nadine Velazquez as Analisa (John Matthews current and younger wife). Again, this is another point the writers got right; make the second wife a younger model, no?
I would not want to pay full price with my movie bucks at the theater, but it is not bad one to view at the Early Bird or matinee price. Save the full price dollars to catch any of the movies in the theater that are nominated for an Academy Award. [Summit Entertainment]