Chris Bond

Be Cool

2nd April 2005
Be Cool Poster reviewer: Chris Bond
rating: 1 out of 5
directed by: F. Gary Grey
written by: Peter Steinfeld
starring: John Travolta, Uma Thurman, Vince Vaughn, Danny DeVito, Harvey Keitel
genre: Comedy, Crime, Music
released: 1st April 2005

I was once informed that you could judge the quality of a film by its cameos. Using this criteria, Be Cool would receive no score, based on the absurd appearance of Fred Durst near the end. Since when was Fred Durst ever cool? Luckily for Be Cool, it is better than this cameo, but not much.

Be Cool is the sequel to the excellent Get Shorty and sees the return of John Travolta as Chili Palmer, along with an all star cast. Sadly for Be Cool, this all star cast proves to be part of its down fall. Travolta, who was superb in Get Shorty, sleep walks through the movie and the rest of the cast hardly fare better; Milan is competent, Keitel seems lost and everyone else is lost (the less said about Vince Vaughanís character the better). Only The Rock walks out with credibility, discarding any ego to play a gay bodyguard and as such, manages to lift the film during his scenes.

However, whilst the acting is poor, the direction is worst. Gary Gray clearly didnít have the ability to reign in any performance, and worse still, seemed overwhelmed by the cast. Scenes seem to drag on purely to accomodate the appropriate star, whilst others feel inappropriately cut just to squeeze in another star.

Sadly, the most painful scene was meant to be the triumphant re-union of Travolta and Thurman as they strut their stuff on the dance floor again. It lacks energy and spark and nicely sums up the problems with the movie.

Be Cool is a travesty of a sequel but should be seen; not because it displays any real quality, but is a perfect showcase of how not to make a sequel, or indeed a movie. If you want to see an all star cast be cool, see Oceanís Eleven.