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Friday, February 9, 2018

The 15:17 to Paris 2018 * * Stars

The 15:17 to ParisDirector: Clint Eastwood
Year: 2018
Rated PG-13
Rating: * * Stars
Cast: Spencer Stone, Anthony Sadler, Alek Skarlatos

The 15:17 to Paris is Clint Eastwood's latest directorial effort. It's also my latest review. In truth, I liked the pic's title. As for "Paris" itself, well it's meh when it could have been so much greater. I need more exuberance with stuff that possesses historical insight.

Released in February to almost minimal, media hype, "Paris" rounds out to a mere ninety-four minutes. Clint is legendary for doing one-time takes and having his films finish rather quickly. That might have got the best of him because The 15:17 to Paris feels unfinished and more akin to a snippet of an Eastwood film rather than a full cinematic entity. Clint was able to get away with a shortened running time via 2016's Sully. In regards to The 15:17 to Paris, the results are instead mixed.

Image result for the 15 17 to paris movie scenesNow to be honest, I've always been a fan of Eastwood's style of directing. He may be a meat and potatoes filmmaker but that's OK. He knows where to put the camera, his storytelling sensibilities are always intact, and his flicks have a streamlined numbness to them which I like. "Paris" possesses these things but lacks professional troupers in the leads and a tightened script (which Clint had no part in writing). The movie renders itself climatically mute and in a sense, underwhelming. The 15:17 to Paris starts out strong, meanders in the 2nd act, and then before you know it, it's over. Next to something like Mystic River or American Sniper, this is patchwork fodder by the man they call "Dirty" Harry.

Distributed by Warner Bros. and told chronologically with interrupting clips of a final, confrontational sequence, "Paris" tells the true account of three friends preventing terrorist activity on a train bound for Paris, France. The three friends in question, are Spencer Stone, Anthony Sadler, and Alek Skarlatos. These are the actual guys mind you and they play themselves in The 15:17 to Paris. Eastwood thinks he's doing something innovative here but it backfires. Stone, Sadler, and Skarlatos aren't trained actors and it shows. Most of their scenes are full of improvisation and ad-libbed nuances. What's worse is that they fail to fully emote and show deadening emotion when needed.

Image result for the 15 17 to paris movie scenesIn conclusion, "Paris" while not recommendable, still kinda shows that Clint Eastwood has a sense of craft and cadence in his work. With whatever project he does next, he needs to better his faulty decisions and maybe take his time more. Rating: 2 stars.

Written by Jesse Burleson

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