The Matador

5. “The Matador.” Good, unclean fun. I’d heard so much raving about Pierce Brosnan playing against type in this movie — where “type” = “James Bond” — that I expected to be let down. I wasn’t, not really. The direction was a little gimicky — the title screens bothered me — and at times I wasn’t sure whether the movie was going to veer off into blatant parody, but the acting was solid and the dialog fun. Greg Kinnear played, well, kind of the guy that Greg Kinnear usually plays, or maybe the guy that Greg Kinnear is, the solid hunky-dory Coloradan married to his high school sweetheart who gets mixed up with an assassin named Julian (Brosnan) who’s on the way down or out or both. The story wasn’t bad, though I was destined to enjoy it, being an old fan of the unlikely-buddies-save-the-day genre. But come on, who doesn’t want to see a movie where Pierce Brosnan’s character says, “Margaritas always taste better in Mexico… Margaritas and cock.” That’s actually an excellent example line for what’s good and bad in this movie. It tries hard to shock — it plays perfectly against Brosnan’s neat Bond image — and when it succeeds, it’s very funny. When it doesn’t, which isn’t too often, it’s just vaguely uncomfortable.

I’d say it’s a bit like “Wedding Crashers” for the 45 and up crowd.

Have I really only seen five movies in the theater so far this year? That still puts me on pace to get to 52 by the end of the year (barely), but if the goal is 100 and the difference must be made up in DVD watching… oh boy.

I have seen some DVDs recently, though! And I will… talk about that some other time.

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