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January 17, 2009

Pearl Harbor

Pearl Harbor At three hours, this Jerry Bruckheimer/ Michael Bay movie is far more egotistical than epic (it reportedly cost $135 million dollars to make).  With a protracted '40s style love story severely lacking in lust, clunking dialogue that floats around like empty cartoon bubbles, and plot holes so big you could fly a B-52 through them, "Pearl Harbor" zips through clichés like a chainsaw ripping through a stack of Cliff's Notes. Josh Hartnett is a welcome surprise, as pilot Danny Walker, not only does he look like a young Tommy Lee Jones, but Hartnett delivers Jones' brand of wounded charisma. Harnett gives the movie its most engaging character apart from Ewen Bremner's ("Trainspotting") scene stealing as Red, a stuttering pilot with a heroic heart. The devastating scenes that make up the attack on Pearl Harbor are beautifully executed and give the movie a tasteful realization of the brutal horror of the siege without succumbing to the gore fest that Steven Spielberg committed with "Saving Private Ryan." Nonetheless, the story feels pieced together as with a confined sub-plot about a black cook, played by Cuba Gooding Jr.
Rated PG-13. 183 mins.(C-) (Two Stars)


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