I went and saw White House Down, even though it bombed in the box office, over the weekend. I’ll tell you I was worried about the film, due to it looking much like Olympus Has Fallen. My concern was on whether this film was going to be too much like the other. So it’s time to break down the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.
While on a tour of the White House, a Capitol policeman takes action to save his child and protect the President, as they are under attack by a group of paramilitary invaders.
The Good –
Roland Emmerich –
Now we are talking about a fun time at the movies. This was your typical comedic, action, summer, popcorn type movie everyone loves to watch. It had explosions, made you laugh, and told a good story. Emmerich has a knack for making his films visually great to watch (Independence Day, The Day After Tomorrow, and 2012) and he didn’t stop here. He really knows how to bring his A game when making films. He made you care about Emily (Joey King) and the rest of the characters, which is something that some directors have a hard time doing. He put together a great cast of people that fit their roles perfectly.
He brought the punch to the film. The fight scenes were what you had expected they would be with Tatum being in the film. He built it up really nice, making each battle seem more important than the last. He brought us one of the craziest “car chase” scenes you will ever see. It was on the front lawn of the White House and boy it was fun to watch.
No matter how over the top some of the scenes felt, the movie just was solid from about 20 minutes in until the finish.
Cale (Channing Tatum) –
What isn’t there to say?! Tatum was at his best in the movie and was perfect for this role. You couldn’t help but cheer the guy on in his chase to get his daughter. Tatum fits the bill of an action star; he is a good-looking guy that is in great shape, and easy to believe that he can kick someone’s ass at any given moment. I really started to enjoy his acting in last year’s 21 Jump Street (Best Comedy or 2012) and he has been doing well since.
Jamie Foxx (President Sawyer) –
I really wasn’t feeling his role to begin the movie. He just played a boring President, which made it pretty hard to get into at the start of the film. As the movie went on though, his character grew on me and I started to like his fit better. I wonder if that portrayal was set up purposely to get him out of his “President” shell.
There is one scene in particular that was easily the funniest of the film. You see President Sawyer go into his closest and out he pulls his Jordan’s. First, that in itself was funny but what came a little bit later was even better. There is a fight scene where they are in the kitchen and the “bad guy” grabs a hold of his shoe “his Jordan’s”. Foxx (Sawyer) proceeds to kick the hell out of this guy while lying on the ground screaming “get your hands off my Jordan’s” and you couldn’t help but bust out in laughter during.
Joey King (Emily) –
She played an annoying little know-it-all child that you really hate and she played it extremely well. You couldn’t ask for a better performance from King.
Jason Clark (Stenz) –
He’s played key roles in some of the best films over the past two years (The Great Gatsby and Zero Dark Thirty). Clark has the look of a bad guy; he has a smug attitude that was fitting to his character. This guy can act and do it very well.
The Rest of the Supporting Cast –
Tyler (Jimmi Simpson) – played a slimy weasel that you couldn’t wait to die.
Donnie The Guide (Nicolas Wright) – Probably had one of the most fulfilling kills in a film in a long time.
Walker (James Woods), Raphelson (Richard Jenkins), Finnerty (Maggie Gyllenhaal) & (Gen. Caulfield) Lance Reddick – All good fits for thier roles and were a great asset to the movie.
The Bad –
The 1st 20 minutes or so of this movie were pretty bland. Like I stated earlier, President Sawyer (Foxx) wasn’t believable one bit at the beginning. His speeches came across as boring and looked read right off a teleprompter. Getting to where the movie was going took about 25 minutes too long from the start, but it paid off in the end.
What’s with everyone trying to make a film over 2 hours? This was another 2 hour and 16 minute film. With the movie being rough to watch in the beginning, I could easily see 30 minutes chopped off and the movie having the same effect by its ending.
The Ugly –
Truly couldn’t find anything I really thought was “the Ugly” of the film.
The Verdict –
3 ½ out of 5 stars
This summer has been filled with some action packed films so far, and this one continued the trend. Even with the bad reviews and poor box office numbers, I would suggest you go see this flick. Tatum and Foxx bring you a good duo in a film that’s worth watching. You’ll see stuff blown up, you’ll laugh and you’ll cheer for the ending. What more could you want from a film?
Good review Richard. Obviously a lot of this isn’t supposed to be taken seriously and that’s why I at least had fun with it.
Yeah was kind of like Die Hard, a bit over the top but a lot of fun at the box office.