Saturday, May 24, 2014
"MIAMI VICE" (2006) Review
"MIAMI VICE" (2006) Review
When I first heard that Michael Mann had filmed a remake of the 1984-1989 classic crime drama, "MIAMI VICE", I was excited. Despite the disappointing way it went off the air, I had remained a big favorite of the show – especially its first two seasons.
Then word began to circulate that the movie version, which starred Jamie Foxx and Colin Farrell was not as good as the NBC series. I heard that it lacked the style of the series and had a poor story. But despite all of the negative comments that had circulated, I was determined to see the movie and judge it for myself.
I am happy to say that I had ignored that person and went to see it, anyway. And I really enjoyed it. Both Jamie Foxx and Colin Ferrell were great, along with Gong Li, Naomie Harris and the rest of the cast. The partnership dynamics between Foxx and Farrell in the movie seemed to be different than the one between Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas in the television series. Do not get me wrong. Both Foxx and Farrell were excellent and had great chemistry. But their chemistry was different than the one between Johnson and Thomas. And I was especially impressed by Jamie. For a guy that started out as a comic, he was very commanding as Ricardo Tubbs. Whereas Johnson seemed to dominate the partnership in the TV series, Foxx seemed to do the same in the movie.
Another change featured in the 2006 movie proved to be the relationship between Ricardo Tubbs and fellow police detective, Trudy Joplin. Despite the on-screen chemistry between Thomas and actress Olivia Brown in the television series, their characters remained friends and colleagues during its five-year run. Michael Mann changed the nature of their relationship in the movie by allowing them to be both colleagues and lovers. In fact, the movie featured a very sexy and romantic love scene with Foxx and Harris. And unlike the television series, Sonny Crockett is not divorced, nor did he have a troublesome relationship with another colleague Gina Calabrese. Instead, Crockett found himself falling in love with Isabella Montoya, the lover and financial adviser of a South American drug kingpin.
The movie’s story boasted some rather exceptional villains, especially the Jose Yebo character portrayed by the talented John Ortiz. It also featured some great action sequences. My favorite action sequence proved to be the outstanding shoot-out in the movie's finale. It did not take me long to realize that some of the elements of the series’ Season One episode, (1.15) "Smuggler’s Blues", were included in Mann's screenplay. However, I do believe that the movie’s story seemed more solid than the episode’s story. My only complaints about "MIAMI VICE" proved to be its opening and fade-out scenes. Both seemed a bit too abrupt for my tastes, but that is Michael Mann for you. He did the same with his 1995 movie, "HEAT"and his 2004 flick, "COLLATERAL". But despite these flaws, "MIAMI VICE" proved to be one of my favorite Mann films. And I had never expected for this to happen.