Tom Cruise needs a big fat hit, and fast. Okay, so he’s still got the Mission: Impossible franchise as a cosy blockbuster safety net, but rather too many of his lone action hero star vehicles have fallen a little flat of late.
So instead of punching out another sequel or a new, lesser iteration of Jack Reacher, he’s returned to his 1980s heyday with director Doug Liman’s jolly-looking latest, American Made. The perma-scowl is final gone, making way for that cheeky grin that was flashed like it’s no big thing in films such as Risky Business and The Colour of Money. And it’s good to see it once more.
This stranger-than-fiction story is set during the Reagan administration, this new one sees the Cruiser playing a TWA pilot named Barry Seal who decides to kick his comfortable life up a notch. Taking advantage of his clean-cut, all-American demeanour, Domhnall Gleeson’s Monty Schafer inducts Barry to help the CIA arm anti-communist rebels in South America and, as this first trailer seems to suggest, it all goes pretty wrong.
Liman and Cruise worked well together on the time-switching sci-fi b-movie, Edge of Tomorrow, and, even though American Made looks to follow a fairly standard rise-and-fall arc, at least it looks one of Hollywood’s favourite sons has been given a chance to flex his acting muscles.
American Made is released in UK cinemas on 24 August.
Published 5 Jun 2017
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