My two favorite actresses are Emma Stone and Jennifer Lawrence and I find Bradley Cooper to be “The Man!”. So I thought that since when Lawrence and Cooper team up, they produce great movies (one being ‘Silver Linings Playbook’), the same thing or something even better should definitely happen when Stone and Cooper team up. Unfortunately that isn’t the case. ‘Aloha’ is a clear reminder that a movie needs more than just good leads.
Military contractor Brian Gilcrest (Cooper) makes his way back to Hawaii to do some sketchy work for Carson Welch (Bill Murray). While dealing what’s ultimately right and what’s wrong for the people of Hawaii, Brian begins to fall for an Air Force pilot, who is tasked with watching over him during his stay, all while he catches up with an ex-love which then leads to him learning about some unexpected news from his past.
Yeah, I Liked That
There is only one good thing about ‘Aloha’ that is worth bringing up. No it’s not the story, not the dialogue, and no, not the directing. The one thing that saved ‘Aloha’ from being complete trash was EMMA STONE. I love Emma (yeah I’m going to just call her Emma right now) so I might be kind of biased. But if I was completely biased then I would say that the entire movie was good and I am NOT saying that. I’m just saying that the only ray of sunshine came from Emma. Her presence made an, otherwise, unbearable movie become watchable. She just brings a positive energy with her talent and vibe. Even in a bad movie she was able to bring a joyous-to-watch attitude to the table with her characters electric “talks like she takes her job super serious” personality. She could probably play a gritty villain in a movie and it would still come off as joyous and cheerful to watch. Lastly, she even rocked the coolest looking sunglasses hat at one point in the movie. Emma is just amazing. It’s really unfortunate the rest of the movie couldn’t keep up with her awesomeness.
Yeah, I Didn’t Like That
OK, enough showing why I’m the head of the Emma Stone fan club. Let’s get down to why ‘Aloha’ is a complete disappointment; The main reasons being the story and the script. At first, while I was watching the movie, I figured I must of zoned out or something because I struggled to follow what was going on at the beginning and a little into the middle…and a little after that. Then I realized, nope, the movie is just doing a terrible job of using its dialogue to set up any sort of plot. Plus, it was using too many Hawaiian traditions and myths to explain what was going on but all it was doing was throwing me off. Usually I’ll admit when it’s my fault I couldn’t follow a story but this time it really wasn’t. Honestly, I didn’t realize EXACTLY what the story was until the third act and then I was like REALLY? That brain struggle I was going through was not worth it at all. The reason for Carson’s end plan was stupid, I didn’t get why Allison (Emma) cared so much about it, and…it just seemed stupid. I really want to spoil it for people who haven’t seen it but I’m going to chill. Even though it shouldn’t matter either way since this movie is so forgettable.
I’m not done with this story stuff. The side stories were also poorly developed. I mean I know they are SIDE stories
but still. They ultimately seemed pointless. Especially the whole Brian and Tracy (Rachel McAdams) “past lovers reconnected” storyline. Yes, it was basically there to reveal a “big” twist at the end but the storyline seemed like initially it was supposed to be a big deal in the movie but the writing just couldn’t make it the intended big deal. So since it came off as such, the “big” twist wasn’t felt (or cared about) like it would have been otherwise. Plus it was very predictable too.
Now on to the wasted cast. Director (and writer) Cameron Crowe must have been overwhelmed with snagging such a nice cast that he had no idea what to do with it. For the most part, everyone seemed wasted. Emma is just that awesome that even when wasted she can do a great job. Everyone else though…WASTED! Cooper is my guy and is a great actor but he couldn’t overcome the script so his character was chramless. Murray, who seems like he is very picky with his roles, must of been forced to do this movie because he lost a bet or something because his character was so weak. Carson is the movies “villain” but you don’t really get that feeling when watching it because the character is so forgettable. Crowe could of gotten someone cheaper than Murray to play such a “blah” role. McAdams couldn’t unboring her character and bring that spark she usually brings to her roles, especially when it comes to her go-to genre of movies, romance. John Krasinski was there in just body form because he basically said nothing the whole time. WASTE. I forgot Alec Baldwin was even in the movie. Lastly, Danny McBride was given no chances to be funny and if he was then YIKES, another jab at the script because I couldn’t tell. When you bring a cast together like this and what we get with ‘Aloha’ is the best outcome you can come up with, clearly everyone’s time was WASTED!
It’s pretty disappointing that ‘Aloha’ has such a great cast but proceeds to produce something that is so underwhelming. Man, if Stone wasn’t involved I can’t imagine how bad I would find this movie to be.
RATING: Would Accept as a Gift (Let me explain myself. If someone wanted to buy it for me or just surprised me with it, I would except ONLY because Emma Stone is in it. I am perfectly fine with owning any movie she stars in whether wack or not.)
P.S. Once again here is my rating scale. There are four different levels. Below is each level in order from best to worse and what each one means.
Must Own = A movie that is so good that I must add it to my Blu-ray collection when it comes out.
Would Accept as a Gift = I enjoyed the movie but don’t necessarily have to buy it (especially if I don’t have the funds to) myself but I would take it if someone bought it for me.
Might Rent = A movie that if I have the urge to watch again then I’ll just rent it from somewhere or Netflix it.
Never See Again = Very simple. I don’t want to ever see this movie again.
(Photo Credit: Allan Brown – http://www.moviereviewworld.com/trailers/aloha-teaser-trailer/; http://i.ytimg.com/vi/Bahx6XFkFGI/maxresdefault.jpg; http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/some-native-hawaiians-disapprove-aloha-797852)