Cinematic Releases: American Made (2017) Reviewed

Tom Cruise takes a break from his normal action and sci fi blockbusters to deliver a homegrown drama that's lined with comedy, thrills and the great onscreen persona he's known for. 

After the dismal failure of The Mummy this past summer, the world's biggest actor is set to reclaim his rightful crown with an excellent film that uses him to the best of his abilities. Cashing in on his ability to change genres and character types, American Made is a reality based project that definitely bends the truth to fit its format. If you're a fan of movies like Blow, Scarface or any other flick that captures the retro '80s feel while dealing in guns, blow, and bags full of cash, this latest Cruise picture will have you wishing it was twenty minutes longer. 

Based on true events, American Made takes the life story of one of America's most notorious drug traffickers and transports it to the screen. Obviously, all names and likenesses have been altered to suit this filmed version. Yet, the root of this Doug Liman movie is hyper realistic and goes for the gusto with once again changing the way we see Cruise. After being so involved in science fiction and Mission Impossible projects the past few years, this team up with his Edge of Tomorrow counterpart is straight fun from beginning to end, with a lot of tension and dynamic thrown in for good measure. Again, American Made definitely plays it loose with the subject matter, but that can be dismissed as the movie throws straight talent at the screen from beginning to end. 

You guys ready for some of that risky business?!!!!!

Mocking the cornerstones of the American dream in many ways, this is a materialist piece of our money obsessed culture delivered to the masses in a package that definitely calls into question the excesses of the '80s. It also sheds light on the corruption and intrigue that was taking place in our government during the early years of the major cocaine drug cartels. Showing us every sign of the coin including how corrupt our own law enforcement is makes for an informative bit of revisionist history that hits the mark repeatedly. The duo of Liman and Cruise really works hand in hand as Domnhall Gleeson continues his steady stride towards becoming one of the go to guys in Hollywood. If you thought he was everywhere now, just wait a couple more years. He's really breaking out. 

Using almost the exact same atmosphere and shooting style as the aforementioned coke drama Blow by Ted Demme, this would actually serve as a great counterpart. The two films would play well together and actually cross paths in many ways. If you're into true crime or movies about smugglers, American Made will satiate that desire. Cruise plays cool. Gleeson plays collected. And Sarah Wright shines as Lucy Seal. If you want to escape the trappings of normal life and want to see how the millionaire smugglers live, check this one out. After a summer of wasting money on tickets, it's nothing but a great time at the theater. This is definitely one of the best of 2017.