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I don't need a lot of research to be confident in stating that never before have I seen a movie open with the hero delivering a baby during a gun battle, severing the umbilical cord with a gunshot, and then killing a villain by penetrating his brain with a raw carrot. Yes, a carrot will do that in this movie. It will do a lot of things.
"Shoot 'em Up," written and directed by the gung-ho Michael Davis , is the most audacious, implausible, cheerfully offensive, hyperactive action picture I've seen since, oh, " Sin City ," which in comparison was a chamber drama. That I liked "Shoot 'em Up" is a consequence of a critical quirk I sometimes notice: I may disapprove of a movie for going too far, and yet have a sneaky regard for a movie that goes much, much farther than merely too far. This one goes so far, if you even want to get that far, you have to start half-way there, which means you have to be a connoisseur of the hard-boiled action genre and its serio-comic subdivision (or sub-basement).
The film opens in one of those grimy cityscapes where a little graffiti might brighten things up. A man with 10 o'clock shadow ( Clive Owen ) sits on a bench eating a carrot. A pregnant woman is chased past by men intent on murdering her. "Bloody hell," says the man, a phrase I find so much more elegant than "What the foosball underwater clockmaker kitchen," if you enjoy creating acronyms. He defends the woman in a hail of gunfire, while delivering her baby, ramming the carrot into his victim's cranium, and finding himself on the run with an infant in his arms, which is also how Owen spent much of " Children of Men ," also with people shooting at him, so you could say he looks right at home.
The Owen character is named Mr. Smith. The leader of his enemies is Mr. Hertz ( Paul Giamatti ). No Mr. Brown around anywhere, but Tarantino seems to hover over the action like a guardian skycam. I am not sure why Mr. Smith is so capable during acts of violence, but it may be because Owen practiced up while he was being considered for the role of James Bond. Yes, that might explain the scene where he continues a gun battle while jumping out of an airplane and neglecting for the longest time to open his parachute.
That was probably one of the scenes Michael Davis drew by hand, thousands of drawings to give the illusion of animation when he made his pitch to the studio. This is a determined guy. I remember 10 years ago he wanted me to see his "Eight Days a Week" at the Slamdance Film Festival. I was covering the Sundance festival, which is itself three full-time jobs, but he kept after me, ominously brandishing a carrot. I made the trek uphill in the snow to a hotel lobby where his film was being shown, and found a spot on a sofa. And the movie was a wonderful comedy, about a kid so in love with a girl that he sets up camp and lives in her front yard a whole summer before she finally agrees to go out with him. So there's your auteur theory at work: Davis likes movies about men who will go to any lengths for a woman.
Comedy is a tricky genre to give an unknown indie his start, however, so Davis switched to the usual indie port of entry, horror, making among others, a movie about road kill that wants to kill you. That's the kind of movie you want to back up and run over it again.
"Shoot 'em Up" will become, I suspect, some kind of legend in the murky depths of extreme action. What elevates it from the depraved to the deserving is a sense of style, a sense of warped humor and the acting. Clive Owen brings what credibility there could possibly be to his character, and makes us believe it as much as we possibly can (not much, in both cases, but points for effort). Paul Giamatti, Hollywood's favorite nerd, is surprisingly, teeth-gnashingly evil. And Monica Bellucci is DQ, the hooker with the heart of gold, who becomes Mr. Smith's partner and the baby's surrogate mother. I thought and thought about what "DQ" could possibly stand for, and finally had my eureka moment: Dairy Queen.
The plot (two words that should be followed by a hollow laugh) involves Mr. Hertz being hired by Senator Rutledge ( Daniel Pilon ), a Democrat who is running for president but learns he is dying and can only be saved by the bone marrow of infants. In the old days, when political campaigns didn't run so long, there would have been no time to impregnate surrogate volunteers and harvest their offspring, another argument against the extended presidential campaign season.
Man, am I gonna get mail from people who hate this picture. I'll fall back on my stock defense: Did I, or did I not, accurately describe the film? You have been informed. Now eat your carrots.
Roger Ebert was the film critic of the Chicago Sun-Times from 1967 until his death in 2013. In 1975, he won the Pulitzer Prize for distinguished criticism.
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Shoot 'em up (2007)
Rated R for pervasive strong, bloody violence, sexuality and some language
Greg Bryk as The Lone Man
Clive Owen as Mr. Smith
Paul Giamatti as Mr. Hertz
Daniel Pilon as Senator Rutledge
Monica Bellucci as DQ
Written and directed by
- Michael Davis
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Shoot 'Em Up
Common sense media reviewers.
Over-the-top action with guns, guns, and ... guns.
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
The hero is stoic and virtuous -- and a killing ma
Many, many guns. They're shot, thrown, explode
Repeated female nakedness, particularly breasts (o
Some clever use of language ("F-U-K-U" i
Cars (BMW), mentions of NBC and the Discovery Chan
Hertz takes a combination of vodka and Tylenol; re
Parents need to know that this over-the-top, gun-focused action movie brims with wild violence and its effects. Much of it is presented in a comic, cartoonishly excessive way, but characters are still left torn, bloodied, bruised, and broken. Violent acts are mostly shooting-related (one particularly extreme sequence…
The hero is stoic and virtuous -- and a killing machine; the villain is snarly and underhanded; a politician is hypocritical.
Violence & Scariness
Many, many guns. They're shot, thrown, exploded, bought, brandished, compared, cleaned, heated to burn someone, and arranged into grand traps. Lots of loud gunfire, shooting in motion (sliding, falling, leaping, flipping), car crashes, bloody bodies dropping, blood spurting and oozing, and lasting wounds, scars, and bruises with bloody bandages. At one point, carrots are used as weapons (jammed into eye sockets/through skulls). A man is tortured by having his fingers broken (very visibly) and threatened with a scalpel to the eye. Fights include kicks, hits, punches, falls, head-butts. First scene shows a mother giving bloody birth, after which she's shot dead. The baby is frequently in danger (thrown, shot at, hidden, used as jokey prop, left in traffic); at other times, Smith teaches him the parts and uses of a handgun.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.
Sex, Romance & Nudity
Repeated female nakedness, particularly breasts (on both live women and dead ones). Frequent references to and images of prostitutes (brothel doorways show various sexual acts, including a woman's naked bottom, a "school girl" performance, and a dominatrix whipping her client). A woman performs oral sex on a client in an alley (viewers see where her head is positioned). An elaborate, comic sex scene has the woman moaning ecstatically as she and partner are shot at and assaulted (no explicit body parts are seen, but nudity is clear, as is the activity). Various colorful phrases (e.g., "nothing like a good hand job," "phallic mumbo jumbo," "you should see me spell my name in the snow").
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.
Some clever use of language ("F-U-K-U" in spelled out in shot-out neon signage), plus a range of spoken/yelled vulgarity, including "f--k," "s--t," ""ass" (also with "hole"), "damn," "hell," "bitch," "p---y," and "rat bastard."
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.
Products & Purchases
Cars (BMW), mentions of NBC and the Discovery Channel.
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Hertz takes a combination of vodka and Tylenol; reference to morphine.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this over-the-top, gun-focused action movie brims with wild violence and its effects. Much of it is presented in a comic, cartoonishly excessive way, but characters are still left torn, bloodied, bruised, and broken. Violent acts are mostly shooting-related (one particularly extreme sequence features characters shooting at each other during a fall from an airplane), but there are explosions and car crashes too -- all with painful-looking results. Sexual content includes references to the heroine's work as a prostitute (she's introduced in brothel), plus shots of naked breasts and cleavage, and a prolonged sex act during a violent assault. Language is quite salty (primarily variations on "f--k") but probably not as plentiful as you'd expect -- mostly because so much of the screen time is spent shooting instead of talking. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails .
Where to Watch
Videos and photos.
- Parents say (2)
- Kids say (6)
Based on 2 parent reviews
Silly as F**K but very good in that way
Silly but enjoyable., what's the story.
Mr. Smith ( Clive Owen ) delivers a baby during a shootout and ends up the infant's guardian when the mother (Ramona Pringle) is killed. Super-skilled (he was trained by the U.S. military in his secret past), intensely focused, Smith is determined to save the baby, though he knows nothing about how to feed or clothe it (he uses newspapers for diapers and a dirty sock for little Oliver's head). He enlists the only lactating woman he knows, a prostitute named Donna Quintano, or DQ ( Monica Bellucci ). More worldly wise than her valiant ex-client, DQ goes along for the ride, falling in love with Smith and little Oliver on the way.
Is It Any Good?
Outrageous and antic, Shoot 'Em Up simultaneously spoofs and pays homage to everything from Bugs Bunny to Indiana Jones and James Bond . Smith is so fast and furious during his always-triumphant encounters with bad guys that he's deemed a "wascally wabbit" by the malevolent Mr. Hertz ( Paul Giamatti ). The pair's antagonism escalates exponentially, accompanied by all manner of gunplay and wild stunts. As Hertz puts it, the back and forth turns into "tit for tat," with each shoot-out, car chase, and torture scene a means for one side or the other to get even.
Of course, no such balance is possible. Every violent act leads to more violence. While the acceleration is demented fun here, the broader context is dire -- as indicated by what turns out to be the villains' awkward motivation: their work for a cadaverous-looking gun manufacturer (Stephen McHattie) and a corrupt U.S. senator/presidential candidate (Daniel Pilon). Both are involved in an imminent decision concerning gun control, but really, they're just distractions from the film's main business, which is shooting and more shooting.
Talk to Your Kids About ...
Families can talk about the movie's cartoonish approach to violence. How does seeing the kind of extreme violence typical of Looney Toons shorts translated to live-action affect your opinion of both approaches? Is animated violence easier to stomach than its real-life counterpart? Why or why not? Why do we as filmgoers like to see things go bang and blow up? What are the consequences of violence in real life? What messages is the movie sending about guns and "gun control"?
- In theaters : September 6, 2007
- On DVD or streaming : January 1, 2008
- Cast : Clive Owen , Monica Bellucci , Paul Giamatti
- Director : Michael Davis
- Inclusion Information : Female actors
- Studio : New Line
- Genre : Action/Adventure
- Run time : 87 minutes
- MPAA rating : R
- MPAA explanation : pervasive strong bloody violence, sexuality and some language.
- Last updated : February 4, 2023
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Movie Review | 'Shoot ’Em Up'
Never Mind Those Bullets, a Newborn Needs Rescuing
By A.O. Scott
- Sept. 7, 2007
“So what do you think of the Second Amendment now?” This is one of many thought-provoking questions asked, between barrages of gunfire, in the course of “Shoot ’Em Up.” I won’t answer the question here — I get enough angry e-mail, thanks — but I’m happy to affirm my general devotion to the whole Bill of Rights, in particular the First Amendment, which protects Michael Davis’s right to make this movie, New Line Cinema’s right to market it and, best of all, my right to tell you what a worthless piece of garbage it is. (I interrupt this burst of patriotism to note that “Shoot ’Em Up” was filmed in Toronto.)
First, let’s sample a bit more wisdom from the mouth of the movie’s hero, Smith, a righteous gunman played, with his usual charismatic glower, by Clive Owen. The person who profits, he advises, apropos of unraveling a nefarious conspiracy involving a United States senator, a firearms manufacturer, a lot of diapers and Paul Giamatti, is always the bad guy. Which leaves me off the hook, since not only did I not profit from “Shoot ’Em Up,” but I also lost 93 minutes I will never see again.
What I did see was Mr. Owen doing, as he did in the incalculably superior “Children of Men,” his utmost to protect a baby. Awwww. Sitting on a bench one evening, minding his business, Smith witnesses bad guys pursuing a pregnant woman. After a pause during which the person sitting next to me at the preview screening loudly beseeched Smith to help her, he did just that, dispatching a warehouse full of thugs and delivering a healthy infant.
The mother, sadly, took a bullet in the head, but her baby — it’s a boy, by the way — turned out to be pretty resilient. Wouldn’t you be if you had Monica Bellucci for a wet nurse?
Ms. Bellucci plays Donna Quintano, a lactating prostitute. That is not a sentence I thought I’d ever write, but I’m sure Ms. Bellucci feels the same way about some of her lines, like, “Does this give you any new ideas about who wants Oliver’s bone marrow?” Excellent question!
Oliver is the baby, by the way, and his bone marrow is needed to further the cause of gun control. Or to thwart the cause of gun control. In New Line’s press notes, Mr. Davis is quoted as saying that, in conceiving “Shoot ’Em Up,” “the hard part was to figure out the mystery and rationale as to why the bad guys want the baby.”
That task is no easier now that the movie has been made, though “made” (to say nothing of “movie”) is perhaps too generous a word for this slapdash assembly of hectic, poorly shot action sequences, lame catchphrases (tell me Mr. Owen didn’t say, “What’s up, Doc?”), sadistic gags and heavy-metal tunes. The body count is astronomical as Mr. Owen shoots ’em up while rappelling down a stairwell, driving a BMW and feigning intercourse with Ms. Bellucci. (Not all at once, by the way. Now that would be cool.) Also, he drives a carrot through the back of one man’s head and uses another one to put out an eye.
Which is funny because, you know, carrots are supposed to improve your eyesight. That’s about the level of wit to which “Shoot ’Em Up” aspires. Smith, described by Donna as “the angriest man in the world,” is full of large and small complaints, usually prefaced by “You know what I hate?” Again with the questions! He hates aggressive drivers and so forces one off the road. He hates the corporal punishment of children and so gives a guilty mom a spanking. He even hates guns, which is why he shoots down scores of bit players.
You know what I hate? Witless, soulless, heartless movies that mistake noise for bravura and tastelessness for wit. I’d never call myself the angriest man in the world, but after sitting through “Shoot ’Em Up,” I felt some sympathy for poor Smith.
“Shoot ’Em Up” is rated R (Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian). It has graphic violence, swearing and a lactating prostitute.
SHOOT ’EM UP
Opens today nationwide.
Written and directed by Michael Davis; director of photography, Peter Pau; edited by Peter Amundson; music by Paul Haslinger; production designer, Gary Frutkoff; produced by Susan Montford, Don Murphy and Rick Benattar; released by New Line Cinema. Running time: 93 minutes.
WITH: Clive Owen (Smith), Paul Giamatti (Hertz), Monica Bellucci (Donna Quintano), Stephen McHattie (Hammerson) and Greg Bryk (Lone Man).
Shoot 'em up review.
A wild, crazy ride that knows what it is and doesn't pretend to be anything other than an insane, yes - shoot 'em up.
A wild, crazy ride that knows what it is and doesn't pretend to be anything other than an insane, yes - shoot 'em up.
Shoot 'em Up is an unabashed action-fantasy movie from director Michael Davis. His goal was to make something that was action unleashed on the screen, and as far as I'm concerned he accomplished it. In spades.
Clive Owen plays "Mr. Smith", a carrot-chewing bystander of an attempted murder of a pregnant woman, who turns out to be, well... formidable would be too subtle a word to describe him as the hero of the film. From the first scene it's obvious that this will be a highly stylized movie, with an extreme close up of Owen that pulls back to reveal him chomping on a carrot. It seems that carrots are his snack of choice (with blatant Bugs Bunny references later on) as well as an impromptu weapon. Something I must admit I hadn't seen before. Not just once, Owen uses a carrot as a lethal weapon in the film, to the effect of much humor.
There's really not a whole heck of a lot to the plot, it's basically just a device to allow one insanely over the top action sequence after another.
He rescues the infant (actually, he delivers the baby first - in the middle of a gun battle) and then proceeds to find someone to at least temporarily care for and feed it, eventually settling on a lactating hooker (played by Monica Belluci). From this point on all three of them are on the run from a gang led by the super fun to watch Paul Giamatti as the villain. Giamatti plays a villain who fancies himself as super-intelligent (and he IS quite smart), cool and collected, and he is repeatedly taking calls from his wife via cell phone, who is apparently clueless that he is an assassin.
Owen brings his quiet intensity to the role as a guy who is unstoppable in a fire fight and is apparently mad at the world. In a way he reminded me of the Michael Douglas character in Falling Down who just went over the edge when confronted with daily annoyances (drivers changing lanes without signaling, people who slurp their coffee, etc.). Monica Belluci plays a nice supporting role in the film and becomes less of a caricature as the story moves along.
But what this movie is really about is action. Action and bullets. Action and bullets and ridiculous stunts. These it delivers in spades, eliciting cheers and laughs from the audience at the screening I attended throughout the course of the film. I really don't want to spoil the fun, but you need to know that this movie is rated R for a damned good reason. I'm pretty sure I haven't ever seen a film with the body count this one has.
Even within the context of this movie there were at least a couple of sequences that were SO over the top that they made me roll my eyes. One sequence in particular has the car Owen is driving in a head on collision with a van. You won't believe how he survives it. On the other hand I don't think I've ever seen a skydiving gunfight, or carrots used in such a violent manner. :-)
While Shoot 'em Up won't appeal to everyone, I thinks folks who are into action films will see it and say that it's what Live Free and Die Hard should have been. For those people lamenting the fact that Die Hard 4.0 didn't get an R rating, cheer up, Shoot 'em Up will make up for it.
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Shoot 'Em Up Reviews
Resembles a Wile E. Coyote and Roadrunner episode doused with blood, gore, torture ... and absolutely nothing for kids.
Full Review | Original Score: 8/10 | Nov 27, 2020
Far from being a spoof on the genre, Shoot 'Em Up is an action movie with the flab removed - with no more than maybe ten minutes of exposition, you're left with a series of interconnecting money shots, each one more gooey than the last.
Full Review | Original Score: 4/5 | Nov 3, 2012
Full Review | Original Score: 2/5 | Nov 18, 2011
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5 | Nov 17, 2011
Full Review | Original Score: 7/10 | Feb 9, 2011
Merrily amoral, shamelessly watchable and outlandishly funny, Shoot 'Em Up is not for all tastes, but those with a dark sense of humor will have a ball.
Full Review | Jul 23, 2008
Say what you will about Bugs Bunny, at least he never needed a backstory.
Full Review | Original Score: 1/5 | May 1, 2008
Full Review | Original Score: 7/10 | Apr 18, 2008
...it's certainly impossible to deny the effectiveness of the three central performances.
Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/4 | Mar 25, 2008
Clive Owen is ideally cast as the likeable loner (with a tragedy in his past, of course) whose self defence and killing efficiency is declared with deadpan delivery.
Full Review | Mar 23, 2008
...painfully uncool one-liners, a flat performance from Clive Owen, a disgusting job by Paul Giamatti and a plot that reveals itself to be idiotic.
Full Review | Original Score: 2/10 | Mar 3, 2008
Shoot 'em Up dispenses with plot, character development and coherency, but it's a blast all the same.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/4 | Feb 4, 2008
...essentially just one long chase sequence that becomes much too monotonous much too soon.
Full Review | Original Score: 5/10 | Jan 9, 2008
a sometimes hilarious, sometimes eye-goggling reductio ad absurdum of the action flick to its barest kinetic essentials - like one of those porn compilations of money shots, only in a different genre.
Full Review | Jan 9, 2008
After about an hour, though, it all becomes a mind-numbing barrage.
Full Review | Jan 3, 2008
One can certainly be amused and entertained by writer-director Michael Davis's hyperbolic action frolics -- I was -- but not without feeling pretty low and stupid.
...arguably the best-directed movie of the year.
...an affectionate, often very funny Simpsons parody of its whole eponymous genre. It's a live-action McBane as co-directed by Quentin Tarantino and Chuck Jones.... Shoot 'Em Up is Hot Fuzz gone to the Dark Side.
Full Review | Jan 2, 2008
In its essence it's nothing but a violent live action Bugs Bunny cartoon and I dug it.
Full Review | Dec 22, 2007
Uma versão idiota de Filhos da Esperança.
Full Review | Original Score: 3/5 | Nov 8, 2007
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Movie Review: Shoot ‘Em Up (2007)
- General Disdain
- Movie Reviews
- 14 responses
- --> September 10, 2007
Sometimes movies look so much better on paper and storyboards rather than on an actual reel of film. Such is the case with Shoot ‘Em Up . It is every writer’s wet dream, a movie light on plot, dialogue and substance; heavy on nonstop action, including incredible gun and knife fights, car chases, aerial battles and scenes of excruciating pain (also known as torture). I can only imagine the smile on the face of writer/director Michael Davis as he penned this. I can also imagine the frowns of everyone during post production when they saw the final product.
Clive Owen is Mr. Smith, a guy very similar in nature to his previous role of Dwight McCarthy in Sin City . He’s a loner with a shitload of guns and the keen ability to use them, and he has a soft spot in his heart for prostitutes (don’t we all?). It’s a good thing too because he’s got himself and his hooker girlfriend Donna (Monica Bellucci) in a middle of a very bad situation. By saving a newborn baby (named Oliver) from execution, they’re now the number one enemy of Hertz (Paul Giamatti), a middle manager hustler-type with visions and talk of grandeur. Wave after wave of his henchmen hunt them until finally, Smith decides to bring the war to their doorstep, at which time what was already seen as over-the-top action, is taken 15 notches higher.
And that is what makes Shoot ‘Em Up a fun movie to watch. The action is simply a sight to see. I don’t recall seeing such outrageous gun fights and action scenes put to film before. The closest I’ve seen to this level was in the 2006 flick Crank . Any scene that could have a gun discharging or have blood being spilled, does. That includes sex scenes, sky diving scenes and a scene at a seemingly serene playground. There are no preconceived notions that there is an actual story to tell – it is all about balls-to-the-wall energy.
But alas, that is also the failure of the movie. There is no real story to tell. Instead of a movie with a plot interlaced with action sequences and moments of high intensity, Shoot ‘Em Up mixes in moments of drama and story to break up the excessiveness of the film. Unto itself it is an interesting concept, but those moments of plot spinning are gratingly painful to watch. Clive Owen does a terrible job carrying the weight of this film. His delivery is forced and artificial. His cocky, witty one liners flat-line the moment they escape his lips. Paul Giamatti is so annoying that I was praying for his death. As for Monica Bellucci, she looks rotten. Her close-ups reveal blotches and anomalies I’d rather have not seen. And since when did she decide to not get naked for her art? She’s certainly not an accomplished enough actress to not be exploited in films like this.
The only way I can recommend this movie to you to watch, would be if you told me that you were in the mood to be mindlessly entertained by a violent movie that does not, in any way shape or form, pretend to be a good movie. If, on the other hand, you’re even remotely looking for a film that makes sense on some level (no matter how miniscule it is), Shoot ‘Em Up is not for you.
I'm an old, miserable fart set in his ways. Some of the things that bring a smile to my face are (in no particular order): Teenage back acne, the rain on my face, long walks on the beach and redneck women named Francis. Oh yeah, I like to watch and criticize movies.
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'Movie Review: Shoot ‘Em Up (2007)' have 14 comments
September 10, 2007 @ 4:19 pm Word Hugger
Yeah, that about summed it up. I thought the randomness of the movie was what made it funny. Two carrot fatalities? I mean what the heck lol.
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September 10, 2007 @ 4:59 pm action-fan
I think you’ve taken the movie too seriously, it was meant to be a crazy thrill ride. Clive Owen behaved exactly as he should have-completely unfazed by the insanity occurring around him. Monica Bellucci wasn’t supposed to be beautiful-she was a dirty whore working in a run down brothel. Hollywood needs to make more films like this.
September 11, 2007 @ 3:17 pm seth
I had no intentions of seeing this movie. Your review solidifies my stance. Thanks.
September 14, 2007 @ 5:59 am mobile dating
Clive Owen and Monica Bellucci…it can’t be that bad I must see it… Thanks
September 15, 2007 @ 12:48 am James
One of the worst movies I’ve ever seen. Crappy action scenes, crappy jokes, crappy story, crappy acting. Not fun, not a thrill ride, not funny, not entertaining, not worth the money. I feel totally ripped off! It failed in every possible way, IMHO.
October 9, 2007 @ 3:43 pm blugi
I didn’t find it that bad after all. But I saw better movies too :D
November 6, 2007 @ 1:31 pm Atomic Popcorn
Loved Crank and its action so I may have to add this to Netflix queue
November 14, 2007 @ 11:37 pm Sirius Lee
If you’re willing to suspend disbelief for the duration of the movie and imagine that you’ve just been transported to a universe where “death by carrot” is a possibility, then this movie’s for you. Never thought a flick with all action and no storyline would ever work, “Shoot ‘Em Up” proved me wrong.
November 25, 2007 @ 5:17 am Bruxism
I just saw this movie last night but I had a mixed feeling between the poor acting of Monica Belluci, the stupid scenario and the funny scenes with Owen. I am not a movie critic but I wouldn’t spend another 2 hours to watch this movie again.
September 13, 2008 @ 8:21 pm monty
I have to admit when i first saw this movie i was a bit taken back. It was not the best action flick i had ever seen. But, you are right the gun fight scenes were just outrageous enough to be entertaining, in a testosterone sort of way. although I was not cerebraly challenged by the film, i did walk out feeling satisfied for the money I spent.
March 20, 2009 @ 2:39 pm Beau
i did not think the plot was very good in this movie. A bit disappointed. But, it kept me entertained for an hour or so. Unlike some other movies i have seen.
April 16, 2009 @ 4:11 am Teeth grind
I remember this film was really not for me! I do need a film to make “sense on some level”.
March 15, 2010 @ 11:23 am teeth grind
I didn’t like this one at all. What is it with Clive Owen and these good for hire movies. Can’t he get roles in normal movies.
December 8, 2011 @ 12:37 pm San Francisco Lawyer
I personally couldn’t get through it even though I love Clive Owen, and think he’s definitely underrated. He was incredible in “Children of Men”, though it was hard not to love that movie with it’s incredible scrip and direction. Shoot Em Up is definitely a movie made for 13 year old boys, and definitely agree with your “don’t bother” review for this one.
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Summary Mr. Smith is a mysterious loner who teams up with an unlikely ally to protect a newborn baby from a determined criminal who hunts them throughout the bowels of the city. (New Line Cinema)
Directed By : Michael Davis
Written By : Michael Davis
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Senator rutledge, sidney mende-gibson, baby oliver, lucas mende-gibson, kaylyn yellowlees.
Hertz's driver, man who rides shotgun, scott mccord, killer shot in behind, wiley m. pickett.
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Shoot 'Em Up Review
Michael davis' opus returns moviegoers to the days when action targeted everything but the brain..
2.5 out of 5 Stars, 5/10 Score
In This Article
More Reviews by Todd Gilchrist
Shoot ‘Em Up Review
14 Sep 2007
Shoot ‘Em Up
Bang! Bang! Rat-a-tat! Pchaw! Pchaw! Forgive our onomatopoeic outburst, readers, but it’s for a very good reason - for Michael Davis’ trigger-happy Shoot ’Em Up is a movie defined by gunshots rather than dialogue.
Designed as the ultimate action flick - Davis sold the film to executives by showing animated storyboards with the title card, “This is John Woo’s wet dream” - it starts as it means to go on, with a demented shoot-out in the middle of a birth which, with remarkable economy, establishes the protagonist (Owen’s sardonic Mr. Smith), antagonist (Giamatti’s snarling Mr. Hertz) and the film’s twisted sense of humour. Then it roars from a shoot-out in a car chase, to a shoot-out on a plane, to a shoot-out during a sex scene, to a shoot-out mid-parachute jump, to a shoot-out during… you get the idea.
Of course, this could all be seen as a wry comment on the absurd nature of action movies, but Davis is being (almost) entirely sincere in boiling down action cinema to its purest form, contemptuously ignoring such staid conventions as ‘characterisation’ and ‘back story’. The result won’t be to everyone’s taste, and it sure as hell ain’t art, but neither is it stupid, showcasing genuine invention and pitch-black wit, as well as two eye-catching leads in Owen and Giamatti.
As a bad-ass, blue-collar Bond, Owen spits out sardonic one-liners almost as fast as he snuffs out inept henchmen. Giamatti’s Hertz, meanwhile, has a great time chewing any scenery that hasn’t already disintegrated under a hail of bullets. Both actors nail the movie’s whacked-out tone, made explicitly clear in one scene where Smith, crunching on a carrot, deadpans, “What’s up, Doc?” This is Looney Tunes writ large.
There are flaws, of course. Although Davis is a fine and inventive writer, he doesn’t quite have the directorial skillset, or budget, to pull off certain sequences, notably the sex scene shoot-out. And repetition is a problem: death by carrot is a fresh, funny and fucked-up idea - the first time round. On the third pass, it’s as bland as carrot juice.
Yet, for most of its running time, Shoot ’Em Up is a hundred-miles-an-hour blast that could well be this year’s Crank. And yes, that is a recommendation.
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Shoot 'Em Up review
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“Fuck you, you fucking fuck!” Understatement’s a dirty word in Shoot ’Em Up, as writer/director Michael Davis boils his uproarious action flick down to bare essentials: violence and sex. Unlike the lily-livered Smokin’ Aces, Davis’ deceptively stupid bullet-ballet actually follows through on its promise of porny guns and gunny porn.
The hand-cannon part of that equation is Mr Smith (Clive Owen), a carrot-munching, perma-scowling, crack-shot good Samaritan who, in the tone-setting opener, saves an about-to-pop pregnant woman by acrobatically massacring Paul Giamatti’s henchmen. It leaves your ears ringing, your eyes bulging and kicks off a riot in your ribcage. And then it gets really silly.
Stuck holding the hungry baby, Smith heads to DQ (Monica Bellucci, playing the Madame Exposition role), a buxom hooker who supplies nappy-clad clients with their lactose fix. Soon, this unlikely threesome is on the run, trying to solve the mystery surrounding the new-born bairn. Along the way, Smith slaughters a never-ending train of faceless goons at regular intervals in wildly inventive ways. Every time you think, “Surely they won’t…” they do. Picture Rambo with a sense of its own ridiculousness and you’re most of the way there.
Davis’ script has a wicked glint in its eye (“I’m a British nanny,” Owen deadpans, “and I’m dangerous”). But it also wobbles precariously along the razorblade tightrope of cliché, occasionally getting its feet sliced. Meanwhile, connoisseurs of such incidentals as ‘characterisation’, ‘plotting’ and ‘emotional depth’ should turn back now. The biggest letdown, though, is that despite a smouldering Owen and sensuous Bellucci, there’s a curious lack of sex appeal.
But Davis’ commitment to going completely OTT reaps other rewards: namely the kind of big, sloppy grin that comes from an adrenalised, testosteroned kicking-in of taste and subtlety’s back doors. Armed with a full chamber of guilty fun and an itchy trigger-finger, Shoot ’Em Up – within its narrow cartoon confines – hits the target.
A bold, brash blast of a movie that will fade from memory like a puff of gunsmoke but still has the cordite whiff of a future cult hit about it for the leathered-at-2am crowd. Just don't expect plot or much depth.
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Shoot ‘Em Up
- Action/Adventure , Drama
- Clive Owen as Mr. Smith; Monica Bellucci as DQ; Paul Giamatti as Mr. Hertz
Home Release Date
- Michael Davis
- New Line Cinema
A man named Smith is sitting on a bus-stop bench gnawing on a carrot when a pregnant woman labors past him and turns the corner. A moment later, a car squeals to a stop nearby and a thuggish man steps out. He follows in the woman’s direction, pulling a gun out of his coat. Smith is reluctant to get involved, but when he hears the woman scream he can’t help himself.
He quickly deals with the thug by shoving the carrot down his throat so hard it comes out the back of his neck. But then the woman begins to give birth as a dozen other mugs show up with hardware in hand. The Good Samaritan fights off the gang with pinpoint gun-wielding precision while delivering the baby (and shooting off its umbilical cord).
In the commotion, the new mom is killed, and Smith is left with a child to care for—a child that gangs of killers seem to want dead. Mr. Hertz, especially, wants the kid cold. He’s an FBI consultant-turned-hit man who just wants this whole messy job finished so that he can go attend his little son’s birthday party.
But a carrot-eating stranger named Smith is in his way.
Smith isn’t sure what to do with the newborn, so he recruits a lactating lady of the night named DQ to help him out. With feeding time covered, the two makeshift guardians put their heads together to solve this little tyke’s mystery. A heavy metal clue leads them to a ring of surrogate mothers and a connection to an important politician. But Mr. Hertz and his growing army of gunmen aren’t making the going easy.
Mr. Smith has a strong sense of duty that motivates him to protect the helpless pregnant woman and her quickly orphaned child. In doing so, he repeatedly puts his life on the line.
Smith and DQ make a pact, of sorts, to parent and protect the child. This arrangement evolves into love, and Smith indicates that he wants to marry the now-ex-hooker and become a family.
Smith and DQ kiss and strip off their clothes. While mostly naked, they engage in explicitly depicted sex that continues through a gun battle and ends in orgasm up against a wall. The unexpected arrival of several masked assailants doesn’t send them scurrying for cover. Rather, without disentangling themselves, they roll off the bed, Smith retrieves his gun and scrambles to his feet—still clutching DQ. (She’s nude except for a short skirt; he displays, for a moment, his bare backside.) DQ is so “focused” on their sex act that she barely seems to notice the gunmen as Smith shoots them and they crash dead to the floor.
As Smith walks through a brothel, the camera spies several women in various stages of undress including breast and rear nudity. One woman is seen straddling a naked man. DQ breastfeeds a man who’s dressed in a diaper. She also gives a man oral sex in an alleyway to raise money to buy the baby a bulletproof vest. (We see the facial reactions of her “client.”)
In an extremely disturbing scene, Mr. Hertz gets sexual satisfaction from fondling a dead woman’s exposed breast.
Smith and Hertz both deliver a variety of obscene quips. At least one deals with anal sex. Hertz decides on a card featuring a bikini-clad model for his 8-year-old son’s birthday.
From the opening scene to the closing credits, the graphic bloodletting action is constant. Weapons used include everything from that crisp carrot to a 50-caliber cannon. Up-close-and-personal violence ranges from a man torturing a woman by holding a hot gun barrel on her bare thigh to bloody headshots to slashing dismemberments.
One example: Smith is cornered in an airplane. He takes a hostage into a lower hold and shoots him in the forehead. After that he grabs a parachute and leaps out, followed closely by dozens of gunmen. A raging midair battle culminates with an adversary falling into the whirling blades of a helicopter and having his arms cut off. When Smith lands, the nearby field is full of scattered dead bodies and body parts that have splattered to the ground.
Other vivid images include a man being jabbed in the eye, and DQ grabbing a club owner’s crotch and ripping off his genital jewelry. (We see the bloody ring afterwards.) What we believe to be a baby is run over by a car. A man has all his fingers broken, one at a time, and a scalpel is driven into his forehead. Another has his middle finger shot off.
Crude or Profane Language
Fifteen f-words and a handful of s-words lead the way. There are also two or three uses each of “d–n,” “h—,” “b–ch” and “b–tard,” and a half-dozen or so uses of “a–.” God’s name is combined with “d–n” five or six times. And there are at least as many foul references to sexual body parts.
Drug and Alcohol Content
Mr. Hertz downs prescription meds in combination with alcohol.
Other Negative Elements
Despite the fact that Smith is trying to save the baby’s life, it’s hard to countenance shots of the infant being roughly transported in Smith’s coat or tossed around in a backpack.
A dirty “diaper” (it’s made of newspaper) is rubbed on a guy’s face. The same grime is shown smeared on a picture.
Shoot ‘Em Up is one of the purest examples of truth in advertising that I’ve seen for some time. For it is indeed nothing more and nothing less than what its title and its trailers suggest. By and large this film exists only to find creative ways to throw its stubble-bearded star, Clive Owen, into as many outlandish gun battles as possible. It also tosses in sordid sexual scenes and snippets of misguided humor courtesy of Monica Bellucci and Paul Giamatti, respectively.
Smith fights off killers while birthing a baby and while having sex. He puts his guns to “good” use in a brothel, in a weapons factory, during a car chase and while plummeting downward, several miles in the air. He kills people by the score with headshots, gut shots, ricochet trick shots and femoral artery blowouts. Guns blaze as he jumps off bridges and catapults through car windows. And he improvises the art of death delivery with everything from well-placed leafy-topped roots to a shotgun on a rope.
There are no moral struggles here. No redeeming moments. No points of honorable storyline tension. In fact, there’s very little storyline at all. Shoot ‘Em Up , with its absurdly ultraviolent pyrotechnics, could easily be seen as little more than a super-spy action spoof or, perhaps, a shanghaied and sleazed-up Bugs Bunny cartoon.
The carrot-crunching Smith and the schlubby, snarling Hertz certainly fit.
But it would be wrong to insult the humorously wisecracking wabbit with such a comparison. For Shoot ‘Em Up ‘s parade of human carnage and hacked-off limbs—goaded on by profane one-liners, nude women and a nod to necrophilia—is anything but funny.
After spending more than two decades touring, directing, writing and producing for Christian theater and radio (most recently for Adventures in Odyssey, which he still contributes to), Bob joined the Plugged In staff to help us focus more heavily on video games. He is also one of our primary movie reviewers.
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Shoot 'Em Up
- A man named Mr. Smith delivers a woman's baby during a shootout, and is then called upon to protect the newborn from the army of gunmen.
- Late at night, in an unnamed U.S. city, a solitary man sits at a bus stop. A pregnant woman runs by, pursued by a man with a gun. With reluctance, the man at the bus stop rescues her and assists with the baby's delivery, while additional pursuers fire at them, including the gang's particularly nasty leader, an intuitive man named Hertz. Our hero, known only as Smith, determines to save the child and find out why Hertz wants the baby dead. At a local bordello, he tries to employ a lactating hooker to watch the child, but things quickly escalate, and this makeshift family is soon on the run. Heavy metal music calms the baby. Why? A laboratory, gun factory, and presidential campaign all figure in Smith's quest for the child's safe deliverance. — <[email protected]>
- In the middle of the night, while waiting for a bus in a bus station, a lonely stranger called Mr. Smith sees a pregnant woman being chased by a man with a gun. He follows the couple, kills the man and helps the delivery of the baby in the middle of a shootout while a gang of hit-man tries to shoot them up. The woman is killed but Smith saves the baby, escaping from Hertz, the leader of the killers. Then he meets the prostitute Donna Quintano, who has just lost her baby, and asks her to breastfeed the newborn. They are chased by Hertz and Smith discovers the reason why the bad guy wants to kill the baby. — Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
- A man, Smith (Clive Owen) sits on a bench ready to eat a carrot. A woman in a yellow coat runs past chased by a man driving an old black Camaro. The carrot eater follows and stops the man from killing the woman inside an abandoned factory building by driving the carrot through the man's head. Suddenly several other gun shooting attackers arrive and Smith fires back killing several. The hero and the woman get to another room where she gives birth. More men continue to attack, led by a balding, bespectacled man, Hertz (Paul Giamatti) . As Smith, the woman and her baby try to escape the woman is killed and Smith flees with the baby. Stopping in a washroom, Smith has a fight with a well dressed hitman, leaves him alive. On a bus he uses his sock to make a cap for the newborn baby. Smith then leaves the baby in a park on a rotating ride. As a bystander arrives to pick up the infant she is shot by Hertz from long range using a sniper rifle. Smith manages to rescue the baby and takes off again. He goes to a church which is actually a brothel. There he finds DQ (Monica Bellucci), a lactating wet nurse hooker and offers her $5000 to look after the baby. She refuses. Hertz fondles the dead mother's breast and realizes the baby will need milk, he to decides to find a lactating hooker and soon arrives at DQ's. He tortures her for info on Smith, who then returns. Smith shoots Hertz and some henchmen, and escapes stealing a BMW. He then gets upset at a Mercedes driver who doesn't signal lane changes and rams the other car. Hertz is still alive and calls someone for 50 more men. In a downtown area, Smith tries to buy bullets with some change and a blood donor cheque. DQ earns some cash by giving a man a BJ in an alley. Smith takes DQ and the baby to his place - a loft in a nondescript industrial building. The door lock is activated by a rat. Driving with two assistants, Hertz arrives at the same building. Apparently Hertz was an FBI Forensic Behaviour Consultant and knows what people will do. In the loft apt, Smith fashions a diaper from a newspaper and decides to call the baby Oliver as in Twist. Smith and DQ notice the baby calms down when watching heavy metal rock on TV and cries when a politician speaks on another channel. Suddenly dozens of attackers arrive. DQ escapes down a dumbwaiter as Smith and the baby escape in a wildly stylized hail of bullets. Hertz and his henchmen give chase with dogs but Smith eludes them by using the baby's diaper as a decoy. Smith decides the baby got used to heavy metal music while in the womb and they go to the local metal club. They go upstairs and find dead men in the office as well as a photo of three women in yellow dresses, one was the baby's mother. Next door Smith and DQ overhear a suit talking on the phone about the dead women. They then find a lab room with a fridge full of samples from one donor. Smith suspects the babies are being used for someone's bone marrow transplants. Smith, DQ and the baby return to a hotel room, Smith decides to wait and watch TV, having called all the major news outlets with the scoop. DQ is a saddened by the memory of her own child. Smith and DQ kiss and have sex. They are interrupted by several swat-team type gunmen but Smith shoots them all as he stays coupled with DQ. Smith brings DQ and the infant to an armoury, planning to put the two into an M-24 tank for safety. He gives her a weapon then causes a distraction by spanking a woman scolding her child to allow DQ to get inside. Smith loads up to go to the Hammerson gun works. Hertz and Hammerson (Stephen McHattie) discuss a British gun wiz as Smith lurks closeby in the gun factory warehouse. Once again a wild gunfight erupts and Smith and Hertz trade verbal barbs. Hertz reveals he knows Smith's wife was killed in a fast food place. Smith goes into action using several automatic weapons he has rigged to fire with strings. Back at the tank Smith explains to DQ that Hammerson is the rich guy involved. In a newspaper he notices the front page story of Senator Rutledge (Daniel Pilon) and realizes Rutledge is the one who needs the baby and his firearms bill will put Hammerson out of business. On the street the three are attacked by a black SUV. Smith takes the baby and jumps into a red BMW and a wild car chase starts. Smith takes out the SUV but the baby falls out onto the road. A black van full of gunmen arrive, Smith shoots them all but Hertz arrives in his limo and drives over the baby. But it is only a doll and tape recorder. Smith calls the Senator's aide (from the earlier washroom fight) asking for a meeting. The two men meet in a airport washroom and they go up into the Senator's campaign charter jet. Smith confronts the ailing politician. As they talk Smith notices white dog hair lint on the other man's pants. He grabs Rutledge realizing he had made a deal with Hammerson. Hammerson and Hertz come from the rear of the plane. Smith takes Rutledge hostage in the plane's cargo hold. He tells the Senator that killing Rutledge will ensure Congress passes the anti-gun bill, then shoots him in the head. Smith bails out with a parachute chased by attackers, they have a gunfight in mid air. Smith manages to push the Senator's aide into the blades of a helicopter. On the ground a wounded Smith observes the body parts and dead bodies. He collapses in an industrial building. As he wakens Hertz is standing over him with a gun. DQ walks warily in front of a church. A beaten Smith is dragged into a basement den. As Hammerson watches, Hertz breaks Smith's fingers, torturing him in order to learn where DQ and the baby are. Hertz explains that the Senator's plane crashed, so their coverup is underway. Meanwhile, DQ boards an old green bus to "Wherever". Hertz increases the violence and brings a scalpel towards Smith's eye. Smith suddenly manages to break free and kills the two henchmen and Hammerson. Smith staggers upstairs and collapses beside a fireplace. Hertz comes near to gloat, then notices Smith's hand in front of the fire, with bullets in between each finger pointed toward him. The heat causes the bullets to fire, and Hertz is shot in the chest. Not quite dead, Hertz rises, but finally Smith finishes him off. With heavily bandaged hands, Smith waits for the green bus in front of the church. He rides the bus full of hippies and gets off at an ice cream shop. Oliver, the baby, is there, safe; DQ is the waitress, and Smith kisses her. Suddenly, some scruffy, armed robbers break in; Smith is able to kill them all, using a carrot to help fire a gun with his bandaged hands. End credits.
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Shoot ‘Em Up Movie Review
Are you a fan of thrilling action movies filled with intense gunfights, jaw-dropping stunts, and an adrenaline-pumping storyline? If so, then the Shoot ‘Em Up Movie Review is here to give you a glimpse into the heart-stopping world of this action-packed film. Get ready to be captivated by the electrifying performances, mind-blowing action sequences, and a plot that will keep you on the edge of your seat throughout the entire movie. So grab your popcorn, fasten your seatbelt, and prepare yourself for the ultimate cinematic thrill ride with Shoot ‘Em Up!
Table of Contents
Shoot ‘Em Up is an action-packed, adrenaline-fueled film that takes audiences on a wild and thrilling ride from start to finish. Directed by Michael Davis, this fast-paced and gritty movie is sure to keep you on the edge of your seat. With its explosive action sequences, talented cast, and thought-provoking themes, Shoot ‘Em Up is a must-watch for fans of the action genre.
The film revolves around the enigmatic and skilled protagonist known only as “Smith,” played by Clive Owen. Smith is a mysterious loner who finds himself caught up in a dangerous game of cat and mouse. He is a highly skilled marksman with a no-nonsense attitude and a heart of gold. Alongside Smith is the captivating and fierce prostitute, Donna Quintano, portrayed by Monica Bellucci. Finally, we have the ruthless and power-hungry villain Mr. Hertz, portrayed brilliantly by Paul Giamatti. These three central characters form a dynamic and intriguing trio that drives the narrative forward.
In Shoot ‘Em Up, Smith stumbles upon a pregnant woman being pursued by armed assassins. Determined to protect her and her unborn child, Smith embarks on a relentless mission to keep them safe. As he fights off an onslaught of adversaries, Smith discovers a sinister plot that reaches deep into the heart of a corrupt government. With Mr. Hertz hot on his tail, Smith must use all of his skills and cunning to outwit his enemies and uncover the truth. The film takes viewers on a thrilling journey through the dangerous underworld of crime, filled with intense gunfights, explosive chases, and unexpected twists.
Shoot ‘Em Up boasts a visually striking and stylized aesthetic that perfectly complements its fast-paced action sequences. The film is shot predominantly in a gritty, urban setting, with the camera capturing every intricate detail of the intense gun battles. The use of vibrant colors and dynamic camera angles enhances the adrenaline-filled atmosphere and immerses the audience in the gritty world of the film. The visual style contributes to the overall entertainment value of Shoot ‘Em Up, elevating it from a mere action flick to a visual spectacle.
One of the standout aspects of Shoot ‘Em Up is its jaw-dropping and adrenaline-pumping action sequences. From high-speed car chases to epic gunfights, the film pulls no punches when it comes to delivering heart-stopping action. The fight choreography is top-notch, with Clive Owen seamlessly executing impressive stunts and gunplay. Each action sequence is meticulously crafted to maintain the film’s frenetic pace while still allowing viewers to follow the intense action. These sequences keep audiences on the edge of their seats, eagerly anticipating what will happen next.
Shoot ‘Em Up showcases impressive special effects that add a touch of excitement and spectacle to the film. From explosive car crashes to innovative and imaginative kills, the visual effects team behind Shoot ‘Em Up spared no expense in creating visually stunning scenes. The practical effects used in the film, such as well-timed explosions and meticulously planned stunts, give the action sequences a tangible and realistic feel. These special effects contribute to the film’s overall entertainment value and demonstrate the dedication and creativity of the production team.
Clive Owen delivers a standout performance as the fearless and enigmatic protagonist, Smith. Portraying a character with limited dialogue, Owen masterfully conveys emotions and motivations through his nuanced expressions and physicality. Owen’s commanding screen presence and intense portrayal of Smith make him a truly captivating lead, and his exceptional gun handling skills add to the authenticity of the character. Owen’s performance in Shoot ‘Em Up solidifies his status as an action star, while also showcasing his range as an actor.
Paul Giamatti’s portrayal of the ruthless and cunning villain, Mr. Hertz, is nothing short of outstanding. Giamatti brings a sense of menace and complexity to the character, making him both captivating and repulsive at the same time. Giamatti effortlessly switches between charm and cruelty, giving Mr. Hertz an unpredictable and compelling presence on screen. His magnetic performance adds depth and intensity to the film, elevating it beyond a typical action flick.
Monica Bellucci’s performance as Donna Quintano, the fiercely independent prostitute, is both captivating and empowering. Bellucci brings a sense of strength and vulnerability to the character, making her a relatable and sympathetic figure. Her chemistry with Clive Owen adds depth to their interactions, creating a believable and engaging dynamic between the two characters. Bellucci’s performance in Shoot ‘Em Up serves as a reminder of her immense talent and versatility as an actress.
The original score of Shoot ‘Em Up, composed by Paul Haslinger, perfectly complements the film’s relentless action and gripping intensity. The score features a blend of pulsating electronic beats, driving guitars, and orchestral elements, creating a unique and memorable soundscape. The music heightens the tension and excitement in the action sequences, while also providing emotional depth during quieter moments. Haslinger’s score adds another layer of intensity to Shoot ‘Em Up and enhances the overall viewing experience.
Shoot ‘Em Up features a carefully curated selection of songs that further enhance the film’s energy and atmosphere. The soundtrack incorporates a mix of genres, including rock, hip-hop, and classical music, creating a diverse and dynamic musical experience. The music selections are cleverly integrated into the film, complementing the action sequences and adding a level of excitement and familiarity for viewers. The combination of the original score and music selections in Shoot ‘Em Up creates a memorable and immersive audio experience.
Script and Dialogue
Shoot ‘Em Up’s writing style is sharp, witty, and filled with clever one-liners. The dialogue is fast-paced and laced with dark humor, effectively capturing the film’s tongue-in-cheek tone. The script embraces the over-the-top nature of the action genre while still maintaining a sense of self-awareness. The well-crafted writing keeps the audience engaged and entertained, adding depth to the film beyond its explosive action sequences.
Humor plays a significant role in Shoot ‘Em Up, providing moments of levity amidst the intense action. The film’s dark and irreverent sense of humor is present throughout, often manifesting in clever wordplay and unexpected comedic moments. The humor helps to balance the gritty and violent nature of the film, making it more accessible and enjoyable for a wider audience. The comedic elements of Shoot ‘Em Up add an extra layer of entertainment value, ensuring viewers are entertained from start to finish.
Shoot ‘Em Up is filled with memorable quotes that have become iconic within the action genre. From Smith’s witty one-liners to Mr. Hertz’s menacing monologues, the film is brimming with quotable lines that perfectly encapsulate the characters and the film’s tone. These memorable quotes have become fan favorites and have contributed to the enduring popularity of Shoot ‘Em Up among action movie enthusiasts.
Upon its release, Shoot ‘Em Up received mixed reviews from critics. While some praised its over-the-top action and unique blend of humor, others felt that the film’s excessive violence and lack of depth hindered its overall quality. Despite the mixed reviews, Shoot ‘Em Up has gained a dedicated cult following over the years, known for its high-octane action and irreverent style.
Shoot ‘Em Up has left a lasting impact on the action genre, with its fast-paced and highly stylized approach influencing subsequent films in the genre. The film’s unique blend of intense action, dark humor, and stylized visuals has set the bar for what audiences can expect from the genre. Shoot ‘Em Up’s unapologetic and audacious approach to storytelling has inspired filmmakers to push the boundaries of what is considered traditional action cinema.
Themes and Symbols
Violence and gun culture.
Shoot ‘Em Up explores the themes of violence and gun culture, confronting audiences with an exaggerated and hyper-realistic portrayal of a society obsessed with firearms. The film uses relentless action sequences to highlight the destructive power of guns and the toll they can take on individuals and society as a whole. By using exaggerated violence, Shoot ‘Em Up invites viewers to question their own attitudes towards violence and its portrayal in media.
Male Power Fantasy
Shoot ‘Em Up can be seen as a reflection of the traditional male power fantasy often portrayed in action films. The film’s protagonist, Smith, is the epitome of the rugged and skilled action hero who is driven by a sense of justice and a desire to protect the vulnerable. Through Smith’s actions, Shoot ‘Em Up taps into the fantasies of power and invincibility that often resonate with male viewers. However, the film also subverts these expectations, offering a nuanced exploration of masculinity and the consequences of unchecked power.
Sexuality and Objectification
Shoot ‘Em Up delves into themes of sexuality and objectification, particularly through the character of Donna Quintano. While initially presented as a sexualized figure, Donna evolves into a complex and empowered character over the course of the film. Shoot ‘Em Up challenges traditional gender roles by allowing Donna to be more than just a damsel in distress. The film raises questions about the objectification of women in media and society, challenging viewers to look beyond surface-level representations of female characters.
Message and Moral
Gun control debate.
Shoot ‘Em Up provokes discussion around the ongoing debate surrounding gun control. By presenting an exaggerated and hyperbolic world where guns are omnipresent, the film forces viewers to question the role and impact of firearms in society. While the film does not take a definitive stance on the issue, it highlights the need for a nuanced and informed approach to gun control, encouraging viewers to critically evaluate the consequences of an unchecked proliferation of firearms.
Ethics in Entertainment
Shoot ‘Em Up raises ethical questions about the role of violence and its depiction in entertainment media. By using over-the-top action and dark humor, the film blurs the line between entertainment and gratuitous violence. It challenges audiences to examine their own consumption of violent media and confront the moral implications of deriving entertainment from exaggerated and often disturbing portrayals of violence. As viewers, we are compelled to reflect on the ethical choices made by filmmakers when creating content that pushes the boundaries of acceptability.
Comparison to Similar Films
Shoot ‘Em Up adheres to many of the conventions established by the action genre. It features a lone, skilled protagonist, intense action sequences, and a high body count. However, the film distinguishes itself by embracing its own brand of stylized violence and dark humor, setting it apart from other action films. This unique approach gives Shoot ‘Em Up a distinctive edge and allows it to stand out from the crowded landscape of action movies.
What sets Shoot ‘Em Up apart from other action films is its relentless commitment to over-the-top action, its dark humor, and its unapologetic embrace of its own absurdity. The film takes risks by pushing the boundaries of what can be considered acceptable within the genre, resulting in a thrilling and unique viewing experience. Shoot ‘Em Up’s ability to simultaneously entertain and challenge audiences with its distinct style and audacious storytelling sets it apart from similar films in the action genre.
Shoot ‘Em Up is a high-octane, adrenaline-fueled film that grabs you from the opening scene and never lets go. With its explosive action sequences, charismatic performances, and thought-provoking themes, it offers a truly captivating experience from start to finish. The film’s unique blend of intense violence, dark humor, and stylized visuals sets it apart from other action movies and makes it a standout in its genre.
If you’re a fan of action films that don’t hold back, Shoot ‘Em Up is a must-watch. Its relentless pace, jaw-dropping action sequences, and memorable performances make it an exhilarating ride from beginning to end. Although it may not be for the faint of heart or those seeking deep introspection, Shoot ‘Em Up is a masterclass in delivering unadulterated entertainment. So buckle up, grab your popcorn, and prepare for an adrenaline rush like no other with Shoot ‘Em Up.