The Boyfriend: “That was a stupid f*cking movie.”
Savages is Oliver Stone’s mid-life crisis embodied in a crime-thriller about marijuana and polyamory.
The story is told via a nasally faux-existential narration by Blake Lively who plays O (short for Ophelia). Her character is probably loosely inspired by the Story of O by Pauline Réage, an erotic BDSM novel about a polyamorous consensual sex slave. Blake Lively, whom I generally deplore as an actress, was actually perfect for this role as a vapid needy Laguna Beach-girl whose beauty is her only redeeming quality. Her status as an object of lust comes to define her entire role in the film. Like I said, PERFECT – since its the same role she plays in everything since Gossip Girl.
Anyway, Laguna Beach Serena Van Der Woodsen is in a three-way relationship with Taylor Kitsch (Chon) and Aaron Taylor-Johnson (Ben), two best friends cum drug entrepreneurs who run a successful non-violent business manufacturing and distributing high-quality weed. They become so well-known that the Mexican cartels, headed by a Cleopatra-haired Salma Hayek, want to join forces. The boys say no. They try to run. The cartel gets mad. They kidnap Serena. The boys go into full-on rage mode, trying to get her back. Unsavoury and incredibly graphic events transpire.
As for the villains, Benicio Del Toro and John Travolta’s symbiotic relationship as a second-string drug enforcer and a crooked DEA agent, respectively, is unintentionally ridiculous. They’re both despicable to the nth degree and both retarded-ly stupid. Well, in that case, they made pretty good, hate-able villains. Just not very fearsome ones.
Okay, I’ll admit. Salma was moderately awesome as drug kingpin.
As a man slowly sinking into decrepitude and professional mediocrity, Oliver Stone probably peed himself (out of excitement and maybe incontinence) when he heard about Savages. Weed? Cartels? Three-ways? Omg, I’m going to be so popular with the grandkids!
Savages feels like a accidental parody of pseudo-stoner culture. It uncomfortably straddles the line between ludicrous and gritty. Its not quite sure if it wants to be absurdist or realistic. As a result, its a hot hot mess. Save yourself from this gimmicky, tacky-tastic excuse of a film and go watch an episode of Keeping Up With The Kardashians instead. I promise you that the latter will feel more genuine.
I leave you with a myriad of quotable brain farts that found its way out of the editing room. Clearly, Oliver Stone is so down with the youth of today:
Serena VDW describing sex with ex-army, John Carter: “I had orgasms. He had ‘wargasms’.”
John Carter: “You let people think you’re weak – sooner or later, you’re going to have to kill them.” / Stoner Kick-Ass mu: “Buddha would not agree.”
John Carter while turning down the Mexican cartel deal: “You want us to eat your shit and call it caviar.”
Salma talking to Serena VDW about her dead family: “I have botox. In my heart.”
Here’s the trailer. Venture there, if you dare:
I totally believe Salma as a druglord. She was literally the only thing that made this movie bearable. Watch her take a giant shit on Benicio (not literally):
Um, and then I came across this video. A snake appeared during an outdoor interview with Salma for Grown-Ups. Okay, I believe her as a druglord a bit less now: