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Formula 51

movie reviewmovie review out of 4 Movie Review: Formula 51

Starring: Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Carlyle
Director: Ronny Yu
Rated: R
RunTime: 93 Minutes
Release Date: October 2002
Genres: Action, Suspense

*Also starring: Meat Loaf, Emily Mortimer, Sean Pertwee, Rhys Ifans

Review by Steve Rhodes
1 star out of 4

Ronny Yu's FORMULA 51 is another bad Quentin Tarantino rip-off. It completely wastes the talents of its two stars, PULP FICTION's Samuel L. Jackson and TRAINSPOTTING's Robert Carlyle.

The plot involves a drug deal, but it is secondary to the antics of the story's two big crooks, Elmo McElroy (Jackson) and Felix DeSouza (Carlyle), who chew up the scenery without eliciting any laughter from the audience. Stel Pavlou's leaden script includes such gems as: "It's always nice to be nice." and "So how much did they pay you to wear that skirt?" The story's running gag is that Elmo sports a kilt and perhaps nothing underneath. This does give the movie the chance to try something new. Elmo has a beautiful woman, played by Emily Mortimer (LOVELY AND AMAZING), trying to look up his skirt.

With jump cuts, fast editing and lots of pyrotechnics, Yu clearly hopes to camouflage how bad his movie is. He fails. No matter how many time Elmo and Felix tried to one-up each other in acts of bravado, I never cared. The only possible reason to see any of FORMULA 51 is to ogle Emily Mortimer, who is a very fetching actress. Save yourself the money and view her picture on-line. She's cute but certainly not worth sitting through FORMULA 51 in order to admire her looks.

FORMULA 51 runs a long 1:32. It is rated R for "strong violence, language, drug content and some sexuality" and would be acceptable for older teenagers.

Copyright 2002 Steve Rhodes

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