Resin Heroes

Savages Movie Review

Grade D+: Savages is a topical movie about the drug culture and Mexican drug cartels along the southern border of the US. It’s a movie that had a lot of potential, but never lived up to it.

In Savages, Chon (Taylor Kitsch), Ben (Aaron Johnson) and O (Blake Lively) operate a massive marijuana growing/distribution business in southern California and sell the best bud in the world. Their group is so successful that they’ve caught the attention of a Mexican cartel led by Elena (Salma Hayek) and enforcer Lado (Benicio Del Toro) and are made an offer they can’t refuse. But when they do refuse, the cartel kidnaps O in order to force a partnership. What follows is Ben and Chon secretly declaring war on the cartel in order to rescue O.

Savages is a movie with a lot of good ideas, almost any of which could have been an interesting movie on its own. There’s the idea that there might be a declared war in the Middle East, but there’s an undeclared one going on right now one the border of the US and Mexico. There’s the idea of how a modern drug cartel works. There’s the idea that good cops getting caught up in the money of drugs. There’s the idea of what do professional soldiers do when they’re no longer soldiers? And many more.

But none of these ideas were explored that much, leaving Savages as a drag with a lot of wasted potential.

The only reason to see Savages are for the performances of Del Toro and John Travolta as DEA agent Dennis. Del Toro plays his role as a man who sees killing as just another fact of life like and Travolta seems to be the only one in the cast who’s having any fun at all.