Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Holiday Flix: Columbus Day (2008)

I might as well do it before we all decide to change the name!  Yes, October is generally more about Horror Films- duh.  That said, how many Horror Films you know of called Columbus Day?  Hell, how many Films in general?  Garry Marshall passed before the trend of Holiday Rom-Coms got bad enough to honor a guy who founds the wrong place and somehow gets credit.  Could you imagine what that Film would be like?  Seth Rogen tries to run a Parade, while James Franco gets lost trying to find Chinatown- good stuff.  In lieu of that, enjoy this Character Drama with Val Kilmer.  The Story involves a man pulling his 'last heist' and waiting to make his final deal when everything goes wrong.  Will he learn to be a better man in the next 8 hours?  To find out, read on...
Kilmer chases a man down and steals a briefcase, but chooses not to kill him when he says that he has a family.
He waits in Echo Park (Echo Park) as a deal is negotiated.  He makes a phone call...
He makes alot of phone calls- sometimes in a Booth and sometimes on his Cell Phone.

As good as the Film actually kind of is, a good 1/3 of it is Kilmer on the Phone!  That's a conservative estimate too.
While waiting, he forms a bond with a kid.

It is not accurate, but this came out the same year as Role Models, so I'm just going to assume that this is a Prequel.
He's trying to make the deal of a lifetime, but why not find time to try and get back with his Daughter too?
Can he make the deal, stay alive and put his life back together?

Well, yes, he can.  The End.
Surprisingly good.  For a Holiday based around a confused Italian Man, it is quite good.  Let me make the title clear here: the Film is set on Columbus Day.  So the 'events' here happened 8 years ago- if they actually happened at all (which they didn't).  The actual Story here is pretty simple: Man waits to make deal and tries to fix his life at the same time.  To his credit, Kilmer does a real good job here.  He plays a very stern Character, but the cracks start to show.  He's actually caring, even though he tries not to get close.  It is clear that he wanted to play this Character, which unfortunately comes with some problems.  Basically, the Film was sold to a Producer to market it.  His plan: market it as an Action Film.  The problem: there's almost no Action.  The solution: just add more of it.  The result: a Film with more Action than you'd expect, but also far more Character Drama than you would.  The Film only works so well now, thanks to outside interference.  In any event, Columbus Day is actually, brace for it, good.  It is still isn't Kilmer's greatest role in recent memory though...
Considering that I literally only bought the Film for the Title and it was free, the Film is good.  It isn't quite the Action Film or Character Drama that it could be though.

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