Thursday, May 25, 2017

Movie Review: All About the Benjamins

All About the Benjamins a.k.a All About the Money a.k.a Good Boys
Cube Vision, New Line Cinema,  Flipside Entertainment, Linovo Productions GmbH & Co. KG, USA, 2002.

Bucum (Ice Cube) is a bounty hunter. His boss Martinez (Anthony Giaimo) assigns Bucum to arrest small-time con man Reggie Wright (Mike Epps) who is avoiding the trial. Bucum dreams about big money and so does Reggie. Reggie is slippery as eel so arresting him is hard.
Ice Cube
Mike Epps
Violent robbers Ramose (Roger Guenveur Smith), Ursula (Carmen Chaplin) and Williamson (scar-faced "Sons of Anarchy" actor Tommy Flanagan) have planned a diamond heist. While Bucum chases Reggie, Reggie hides in the robbers' van. So he is the eyewitness and the bad guys want him dead. Reggie and his wife Gina win Lottery, but unfortunately Reggie dropped his walled when he escaped the criminals. So involuntarily Reggie talks Bucum to help him get the lotto ticket back. Bucum does not buy the story, but gets interested in busting the diamond bandits. To keep their manly macho men in reigns, Gina and Bucum's colleague Pam (Valarie Rae Miller) offer some backup.
Roger Guenveur Smith
Tommy Flanagan
Ice, ice, baby
"AATB" is a "Bad Boys" style action comedy but in B-film attitude with more streetwise dialogue (contains language) that wouldn't go through on a bigger budget Hollywood-films. The plot mixes hard-boiled and occasionally quite cruel action and mismatched-pair buddy comedy. Although the beginning is a bit meh, it gets better when the main story gets going. Ice Cube's gangsta style contrasts the hokum-talking swindler character of Mike Epps. Mike Epps' jokes seemed quite forced in the early scenes but the comedy with Cube worked. The soundtrack contains rap and because the story is set in Miami also some easy-going Latino rhythms. It is uneven but still watchable and often hilarious crime comedy but not for anyone's taste.
Valarie Rae Miller and Eva Mendes
Pam and Gina
Rating: Good

Starring: Ice Cube, Mike Epps, Tommy Flanagan, Carmen Chaplin, Eva Mendes, Valarie Rae Miller, Anthony Giaimo, Jeff Chase, Roger Guenveur Smith, Gino Salvano, Tony Ward, Dominic Chianese Jr., Anthony Michael Hall, Antoni Corone, Bob Carter, Evelyn Brooks, Joan Turner, Julianne Beres, Shad Moss (as Lil Bow Wow), Robert MacBeth, Barbara Barron, Oscar Isaac, Jodi Lyn Brockton, Allen Choate, Marianna Astakhova, Kevin Bray
Director: Kevin Bray

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