I blew off Man on Fire when it came to the theater mainly because the trailers never gave me a reason to want to watch. It appeared to be a typical bodyguard shoot-em-up flick, so I wrote it off as Denzel Washington making what I call a “cashing in” film – just filler to score a quick $20 mil until the next good film came along. I can admit when I am wrong.
Boy was I wrong… This film has great acting, a very good storyline and good direction – all of which add up to you caring about the people in the film. Dakota Fanning seemed to be the smartsy cute girl-du-jour when she made it big in the film Uptown Girls, but she can actually act really well.
Tony Scott goes a little overboard on the jump cuts and MTV-style effects ala Darren Aronofsky. Take away some of the camera and editing silliness and this is an exceptional film… granted, some of it was powerful (ala the drinking scenes), but some of it was just Scott jerking off on film.
RATING 8 out of 10