Wednesday, January 13, 2010


If you only watch one James Woods movie IN YOUR LIFE!... make it Oliver Stone's 1986 epic guerrilla style masterpiece SALVADOR. This gonzo adventure follows a of burnt out photojournalist, Richard Boyle (Woods) and his out of work DJ pal Doc Rock (Jim Belushi, who's never had a part like this again) as they drive the sorriest-looking Mustang convertible ever seen on film down to the killing fields of El Salvador. Woods gives a tour de force performance (as well as being Oscar nominated) as a man who's lost everything in his life, and who's last chance for redemption seems to be only to be found in El Salvador. This film was only Stone's second directing effort, and he gave it everything he had. You feel as if this "crazy bastard" just plooped his actors right into the middle of the real revolution (and I think some of his actors felt that way too?)  This film also featues great supporting performances by John Savage as a samurai war photographer, who'll do anything to "get the shot" and ends up paying the ultimate price for it and the lovely, Cynthia Gibb as an American nun, who's all too sweet & fearless for her own good. Based on actual historical events (including the political assassination of Archbishop Oscar Romero) and loosely based on real-life photojournalist, Richard Boyle exploits (the real Boyle, co-wrote the script with Stone) this film makes no bones of who the bad guys are and history tells us now, that it looks like they were right. The DVD features a great documentary on the film and its turbulence on the set; from Stone scraping everything he had to get the picture made, to the love hate relationship between the director and his star Woods. And even more was interesting was Woods real life animosity for the man that he was portraying in the film. A whole generation has come and gone since the bloody events in this film have happened (approximately 75,000 El Salvadorians were killed between 1980 and1992.) Damn, it just goes to show you, that so many things in the world, never ever change. If you get the chance, do yourself a favor and see SALVADOR, it'll stay with you longer than anything in 3-D.

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