Flashbacks Tedious; Whitaker Is Tops

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Let me start like this, if you put all logic and laws of physics aside, then "Vantage Point" wasn't half bad. The reason I would even compliment it that much is mostly due to the, as always, spectacular acting by Forest Whitaker. In fact, I would even recommend that you all go see "Vantage Point," if only for Forest Whitaker's performance.

I thought the rest of the acting in the movie, however, was kind of corny and unbelievable. Dennis Quaid played Thomas Barnes, one of the president's Secret Service agents and right-hand man. According to the story, Thomas Barnes had been shot about a year before his current assignment, jumping in front of a bullet to save the president's life, and was shaken up pretty bad by it. He had had some nervous breakdowns since then, but when I watched Dennis Quaid try to portray this type of character, I didn't see a kind of jumpy and shaking Secret Service man that had been through some hard times and had some deep-seated mental issues because of it . . . all I saw was Dennis Quaid, darting his eyes back and forth and walking really stiff all the time.

I do think that the idea of the film was good.

I have seen flashbacks in movies before, but never eight flashbacks in a row, from eight different people.

The movie opens in a crowded town center somewhere in Spain.

The first vantage point is that of Rex, played by Sigourney Weaver, a producer for a major news station covering the event.

The president is about to give a speech and talk with more than 150 world leaders to sign a revolutionary peace treaty. Little does everyone know, there is a whole lot of craziness about to go down, when he begins to give his speech.

Rex is in a mobile control center where she can see the screens from every one of the news cameras covering the event and direct them on what to do. The control center is a couple of blocks from the event, so Rex sees what happens from basically 50 different angles, once the shooting and explosions start.

Then, when you're really starting to get into the story, they start it over again with somebody else's point of view.

I thought that would be kind of cool and interesting, and it was, until about the fifth point of view. At that point I was just sort of sitting there like, "Okay, I've seen the president get shot five times in a row, I get it, let's move on."

So, after about an hour-and-a-half of flashbacks, the movie goes on with a ridiculously unbelievable chase scene and then, you know, big climax and its over.

I give "Vantage Point" 2-1/2 stars, and Forest Whitaker can be thanked for that generous rating.

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