seen @ Cinemart Fiveplex, Forest Hills, Queens NY
As much as Robert Zemeckis loves making movies with spectacular visual effects, you'd think he'd be a geek icon on the level of Cameron, Jackson, Lucas and Spielberg. I think he comes close. He did make the Back to the Future trilogy, after all. I'm not sure. I'm not as in tune to geek culture as I once was. I know seeing his name on a movie means something to me. That's why I went to see Allied. I was gonna pass on it until I saw it was his film. Ironically, it's one of his rare movies that's not an obvious special effects extravaganza.
I still remember the first time I saw Forrest Gump. It was mind-boggling. How'd they make it look, I thought at the time, like Tom Hanks was interacting with Nixon and John Lennon and other people from the past? How'd they make it look like Gary Sinise really lost his legs? I couldn't begin to figure it out. It was so new and different. Moments like that are what keeps me going to the movies - that hope I'll see something like that.
I wouldn't say Allied had comparable moments, but for what it was, it was worth the price of admission. Seeing Brad Pitt in period clothes, in a period setting, reminds me once again that he would have been an A-level star in any time period. This film does have an Old Hollywood feel to it, which seems intentional. It's as if Zemeckis sought to remind us of a time when stars carried a movie - glamorous people doing exciting things.
Was it only a few days ago I was lamenting the inability of today's leading men to love a woman in the movies? Allied has romance to spare. In fact, it's what Jeanine Basinger would call a "marriage movie." The love between Pitt and Marion Cotillard, cemented with the birth of their child, is the point of the movie, something I forgot when trying to figure out if she was a Nazi double agent or not. It was nice to see in a big Hollywood movie again. Would that we could see it more often.
I saw Allied with a small late-afternoon audience of mostly old people. I know this because they talked. Not enough to make me want to beat them over the head for it, but enough to be noticeable. In one early scene, Pitt and Cotillard are talking softly; some dude across the aisle actually yelled, "Louder!" as if there was a problem with the audio. (There wasn't.) Several rows behind me, two or three other seniors periodically felt the need to comment on the action. I arrived late, like after the title card (yet another movie without opening credits), so I kinda felt, in a way, like I had no right to complain. If they had been more chatty, however, things would be different.