Friday, 19 July 2013

The Numbers Station (2013)

Tagline: The Code has never been compromised. Until now.
Cusack Plays: CIA Operative Emerson Kent

After a black ops killing job gone wrong Cusack is sent over to England to watch over a remote number station and to pal up with one of the ladies who works in it. A number station, for those not au fait with clandestine broadcasting techniques is a sort of radio station which broadcasts sequences of numbers which are then picked up by agents and decoded to get their orders. One has to assume this is some sort of well paying job, because seriously who wants to sit in an underground bunker and read out lists of numbers for a living? Especially when you’re the gorgeous Malin Akerman. 

Cusack and Akerman turn up for work one day  -  all is not well and people start shooting at them – what follows is them listening back to the recording of the last shift, and trying to piece together what’s going on and undo the wrongs that have been done – spoiler – essentially someone sending out some unauthorized lists of numbers which translate to orders to kill people.  

If you like guns, lists of numbers and people using words like 'cypher' you will be all over this bad boy. And for the rest of you, I wouldn’t bother unless I have somehow made that synopsis sound tantalising. Cusack and Akerman's acting talents probably elevate this slightly above other similar films, and they both enjoy a lot of screen time as we don’t see too many other characters, especially when they are in the bunker. Having been binge watching Game of Thrones of late though I did notice ‘Married to her Dad’ Gilly near the start and "Onion Knight" Davos as one of Cusack’s fellow agents.

Looking ahead, this weekend sees the release of The Frozen Ground where Cusack plays a serial killer. I have to say I’m pretty tired of seeing him play killers and cops though so looking forward to “The Butler” where he plays Richard Nixon…

Friday, 12 July 2013

The Factory (2012)

Tagline: 'Based on actual events'
Cusack plays: detective Mike Fletcher

Not a biopic of Andy Warhol’s studio, the factory in this case is a baby making factory. A crazy dude is picking up prostitutes, taking them back to his and them impregnating them and making him call him ‘daddy’. Oh goody.

As cop Mike, Cusack has been on the case for a while along with his partner Kelsey (Jennifer ‘Deb from Dexter’ Carpenter) when it gets personal after ‘daddy’ kidnaps his teenage daughter. Daughter is not a hooker but sort of gets mistaken for one and taken. Taken, incidentally being a far superior film if you're in the mood for a man looking for his kidnapped daughter. Anyway, I digress.

This is a just about passable, if very predictable watch. There are some big ‘reveals’ but you will likely see them coming a mile off. Cusack is looking good with a nice full head of hair and some super big black coats and leather gloves for investigating. It has a nice gruesome start when crazy killer Gary accidentally picks up a transsexual prostitute who is of no use to him and disposes of them accordingly.

The film claims to be ‘based on true events’. Can’t find any real proof of this after a quick google but I suppose there have been a few cases where girls have been kidnapped and impregnated by their captor. Probably not the taking-the-cops-daughter-by-accident though.