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A Man Apart

movie reviewvideo review out of 4 Movie Review: A Man Apart

Starring: Vin Diesel, Larenz Tate
Director: F. Gary Gray
Rated: R
RunTime: 110 Minutes
Release Date: April 2003
Genre: Action

*Also starring: Timothy Olyphant, Jeff Kober

Review by Steve Rhodes
1½ stars out of 4

Not all Vin Diesel movies are created equal. Great as a cartoon character type of action hero, as he was in XXX, or as a bad boy, as in THE FAST AND THE FURIOUS, Diesel isn't the right choice for a role than demands something of an emotional range, as does A MAN APART. But to be fair to Diesel, with a script this clunky, any actor would have failed.

Most of the problems, however, are caused by director F. Gary Gray. His action sequences are long, confusing blurs usually shot in shades of black and blacker, so that the images are frequently indecipherable, leaving you guessing as to who is firing at whom and why. Gray's THE NEGOTIATOR was a model of clarity, but this time he has trouble coming up with coherent and convincing scenes.

Diesel plays Sean Vetter, a never-by-the-book DEA agent specializing in cartel-busting and in revenge. If you try to keep score of the number of illogical actions he performs, you'll quickly lose track -- not that you'll care, since the movie spurts along, stopping and starting like an old washing machine with a flaky plug. Try not to fall asleep during the movie's many lulls.

About the only useful thing Sean ever says is, "It's not over." This is a clue to stay in your seat as the movie tries on ending after ending before finally finding one that it likes. I suggest you end it before it begins. Go rent XXX instead of seeing A MAN APART. You'll have much more fun.

A MAN APART runs 1:50. The film is in English (which frequently needs subtitles) and in Spanish with English subtitles. It is rated R for "strong graphic violence, language, drug content and sexuality" and would be acceptable for older teenagers.

Copyright 2003 Steve Rhodes

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