Catch .44, 2011.
Written and Directed by Aaron Harvey.
Starring Forest Whitaker, Bruce Willis, Malin Akerman, Nikki Reed, Deborah Ann Woll, Reila Aphrodite and Brad Dourif.
Three sassy sisters-in-crime are sent to intercept a lucrative drug deal at an isolated diner, but what should have been a simple job quickly goes bad, leading to a deadly game of cat-and-mouse.
Catch .44 sees a group of three feisty friends (Akerman, Reed and Woll), working at the behest of drug-pusher Mel (Willis), see a previous job go array, and are forced to make amends with a similar, albeit easier job in a small town American diner to intercept a seemingly twisted and double-crossed shipment. Along the way, they cross swords with the mysterious Ronny (Whitaker) before, surprise surprise, no-one is who they seem, and soon they are all embroiled in a game of “catch the traitor” and the only way out is to be last man standing.
On the surface, you’d be forgiven for thinking that, with the talent attached, coupled with the Tarantino-lite storyline, Catch .44 would be worth a watch. Sadly, it’s anything but. Director Aaron Harvey has obviously been influenced no end by the aforementioned director, but in trying to intimidate the auteur he seemingly adores, he forgets to concoct a cohesive and engaging film. His direction tries to be showy but is just lifeless and dreary, and his script is overly indulgent and disjointed throughout, with every twist and turn unsurprising.
What makes the film even more ludicrous is its complete miscasting of all the main roles, particularly those portrayed by Willis and Whitaker. One a hero to a generation; the other an Oscar winner. What they saw in this one aside from a decent pay check is open to debate. Sure, both actors exude class in whatever they do, and Catch .44 never reaches such lows as Color of Night or Battlefield Earth, but it’s definitely one that neither will want to be reminded of any time soon. While looking great, Akerman struggles throughout, and isn’t particularly convincing as the main protagonist of the story. Nikki Reed adds some much needed gumption to the film, but she too gets lost in the baffling plot and the horribly over-used flashbacks.
Over indulgent dialogue, shoddy set-pieces and a script where every single twist and turn is signposted more than London-bound A-road a good film do not make. And even with the presence of Willis and Whitaker, Catch .44 is a huge misfire for all concerned. Not even any features to cushion the blow. Avoid.
Flickering Myth Rating: Film ★ / Movie ★