American Made 2017

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American Made

American Made

American Made Full Movie

Country: United States
Year: 2017
Category: Action, Biography, Comedy
Release Date: 25 August , 2017
Director: Doug Liman
Starring: Tom Cruise, Domhnall Gleeson, Sarah Wright
Age Restriction: 18 years
Duration: 109 minutes
Budget: $80,000,000

American Made is a 2017 American action-biography comedy film directed by Doug Liman and written by Gary Spinelli

A brief featurette intercut with scenes of upcoming biopic American Made and a discussion between director Doug Liman and Tom Cruise in which the two detail the real-life Barry Seal has hit the web via Universal Pictures. Cruise is, again, teaming up with Edge of Tomorrow director Liman and will be portraying the historic anti-hero in the film, which is slated for release at the end of September.

Akin to recent films such as War Dogs or even the Leonardo DiCaprio-led Wolf of Wall Street, American Made looks to observe, but not celebrate, the raucous lifestyle of a real-life scoundrel, Barry Seal – a roguish pilot who double-crossed both the CIA and the Mexican drug cartel. However, as these lines can sometimes be blurred, even Cruise admits to a bit of “wish fulfillment.”

Right now Tom Cruise is out of commission with a broken ankle, halting the production of Mission: Impossible 6 for anywhere from six weeks to three months. But if you still need your fix of Cruise in the meantime this fall will deliver a big dose of the international superstar in the true story of an airline pilot turned drug and gun trafficker and money launderer for the government.

American Made tells the real story of a man named Barry Seal who was recruited by the CIA to do some shady business dealings with some of the most notorious drug kingpins of the 1980s, and he was paid handsomely for it. For those who maybe don’t know about the true story, a new American Made featurette shows Tom Cruise and director Doug Liman recounting what they learned about the real Barry Seal, complete with new footage from the movie itself.

There’s an element of Catch Me If You Can in this movie, and it sounds like quite the compelling story. Plus, for those who like Tom Cruise when he’s doing his own stunts, American Made has him taking on quite the dangerous and crazy one. Cruise is a trained pilot himself, so he did a bit of real flying in this movie. But in one sequence, his character has to leave the cockpit to unload some stuff from the plane while it’s flying in mid-air. That’s something Cruise really did. He flew a plane, left the cockpit to throw something out the back of it, and then went back to the cockpit.

Here’s hoping that Cruise recovers from his recent Mission: Impossible 6 set injury with flying colors so he can still pull off some of these stunts that he loves doing so much on the big screen. In the meantime, you can watch the American Made trailer over here and read the official synopsis below

See Tom Cruise flying high as Universal Pictures has just brought online a new American Made featurette for the upcoming true story of an undercover CIA pilot. American Made reunites star Tom Cruise with his Edge of Tomorrow director, Doug Liman. Look for it to hit the big screen September 29.

American Made is based on the outrageous (and real) exploits of Barry Seal, a hustler and pilot unexpectedly recruited by the CIA to run one of the biggest covert operations in U.S. history.

There’s a lot going on in “American Made,” a hectic, hyperactive true-life tall tale that jumbles Colombian drug-smuggling, CIA arms-trading, Midwestern fortune-making and a whole lot of very fancy flying. Yet the most salient image in the whole coked-up kaleidoscope is a simple one: Tom Cruise’s sunglasses. There may be significant stretches in Doug Liman’s film where the star, as TWA pilot turned all-sides-of-the-law hustler Barry Seal, isn’t wearing wire-rimmed aviator shades, yet somehow it feels as if they’re always there. An accessory that Cruise made wholly his own in “Top Gun,” they connote as much rakish bravado and slightly impenetrable machismo now as they did then — 1986, coincidentally the year that the action in “American Made,” which spans eight fast years of Carter-to-Reagan-era governmental skulduggery, comes to a startling head.

A sweat-slicked, exhausting but glibly entertaining escapade on its own terms, “American Made” is more interesting as a showcase for the dateless elasticity of Cruise’s star power. It feels, for better or worse, like a film he could have made at almost any point in the last 30 years: As Cruise’s character here puts his prodigious aviation skills to wildly irresponsible use, it’s tempting to imagine Liman’s film as an oblique spiritual follow-up to the adventures of flashy Navy pilot Pete “Maverick” Mitchell, beating tardy forthcoming sequel “Top Gun: Maverick” to the punch. The films’ worlds might be very different, not least since “American Made” counts as fast-and-loose non-fiction, but Cruise’s presence across them, all Colgate grin and cock-of-the-walk swagger, is notably consistent. (Even period authenticity has no dominion over him: While his co-stars are slathered in late-1970s and ’80s kitsch, Cruise’s hair and costuming throughout can scarcely be linked to any milieu.)

It’s frankly a relief to see Cruise acting this assertively himself again (give or take a mild Louisiana drawl) after watching his leading-man persona anonymously shoehorned into the established franchise constraints of “The Mummy” earlier this summer. What the actual Barry Seal may have been like is almost impossible to glean from his performance; this is a star vehicle first and foremost, which makes the film’s balancing of fact and fancy even harder to parse. Gary Spinelli’s script follows in the recent tradition of “War Dogs,” “Gold” and “American Hustle” — all high-flown, fact-based tangles of individual and institutional corruption — by blatantly owning up to the absurdity of its real-life premise. “Shit gets really crazy from here,” Seal even admits in one of several grainy, after-the-fact camcorder confessionals, a somewhat clunky framing device the film uses in lieu of voiceover.

Things are already pretty chaotic to begin with, as the film opens with a standard-issue disco-era swirl of archive footage (including, cutely, a vintage Universal Pictures logo at the outset) and jaunty airborne antics. All set to Walter Murphy’s “A Fifth of Beethoven” — kicking off a peppy jukebox soundtrack that later reaches its on-the-nose thematic apotheosis with Talking Heads’ “Slippery People” — this intro swiftly establishes Seal as a devil-may-care playboy in TWA uniform. The year is 1978 and Seal is bored of his domestic flight path, keeping himself amused with the odd bit of cigar smuggling and faked inflight turbulence. When he’s approached by CIA man Schafer (Domhnall Gleeson, laying on the alpha smarm) to fly undercover for them instead, skimming Central America to take surveillance photos, he’s only too quick to accept.

If Seal’s wife Lucy (Sarah Wright Olsen) and two children back in Baton Rouge are secondary considerations to him, the film treats them likewise: Doing her best with scant material from the script and wardrobe department alike, Wright Olsen is mostly limited to fretful chiding on the sidelines as her husband’s covert career veers off course. Which it does, in rapidly escalating but dizzyingly lucrative fashion: An illicit sideline in transporting cocaine from Colombia for the Medellín Cartel is soon co-opted by the CIA into a major gun-running racket, while Seal’s new home base in back-of-beyond Arkansas becomes a military training ground for the Contras.

To go by the film’s account, Seal simply winked and smiled his way into becoming a critical player in the Iran-Contra affair of the mid-1980s, and his blithe detachment from the political specifics of the scandal (he admits to an affection for Ronald Reagan, but principally on the basis of “Bedtime for Bonzo”) brings to mind a smoother-operating Forrest Gump. As major figures like Pablo Escobar and Manuel Noriega flit through the film in incidental cameos, Seal remains the mostly charmed, accidental center of it all.

Fusing the lickety-split comedy of his “Swingers” days with the more businesslike action smarts of his latter-day Hollywood works, Liman does his best to keep this top-heavy narrative in constant motion — without approaching the technical or structural inventiveness of his previous Cruise collaboration, 2014’s undervalued sci-fi mindbender “Edge of Tomorrow.” Enlisting “City of God” cinematographer César Charlone proves a canny move, as the Uruguayan’s roving, agitated camera style (not to mention a perspiring, overripe palette, heavy on hot yellows) implies antsy tension even in comparatively banal domestic scenes.

As storytelling, however, “American Made” is both so distracted and so distracting that there’s barely time to consider what it all adds up to. Beneath Cruise’s unruffled commandeering lies a messy array of secondary characters somewhat haphazardly chopped into proceedings by editor Andrew Mondshein. (Dylan Tichenor and Saar Klein are credited with additional cutting.) From Seal’s redneck brother-in-law (a typically slithering Caleb Landry Jones) to a suspicious local sheriff (Jesse Plemons, who seems to have suffered most in the edit), such figures add little color or credibility to the film’s comic-book reportage.

In the film’s press materials, Spinelli admits to being in thrall to Martin Scorsese’s “GoodFellas,” and the influence is particularly clear in a headlong final act that deals with the souring of Seal’s questionably achieved American dream. But “American Made” lacks the sense of moral reckoning and self-effacing human irony it needs to achieve the emotional payoff or tragicomic heft of “American Hustle,” let alone Scorsese’s masterwork. Based on a true story or otherwise, it winds up simply as another sharp, spit-shined Tom Cruise jet, and not a bad one at that: The genius of Cruise’s superstardom may be that he can make even the scuzziest American scoundrel seem, like Ethan Hunt or Maverick Mitchell, untouchably heroic. When those aviators are on, all bets are off

There’s a case to be made that Tom Cruise is a compelling screen presence when he looks desperate. Much evidence for this claim was gathered in his millennial run – 1999’s “Eyes Wide Shut” and “Magnolia,” 2001’s “Vanilla Sky” – in which varyingly forceful writer-directors did their level best to chip away at their star’s glib toothpaste-salesman confidence and expose the very human doubts and frailties behind it. After those box-office failures, Cruise retreated to the surety of known properties and franchises; though we got glimpses of other Cruises – notably the Comic Cruise of “Tropic Thunder” – this was his fall-back position up until the disastrous “The Mummy.” It’s possible that audiences had grown tired of watching a performer playing it so consistently safe: as Kubrick and Paul Thomas Anderson had twigged, it’s always more revealing watching a control freak losing control.

“American Made” isn’t a major breakthrough, but it still feels like a career progression for Cruise simply by handing him an intriguing role: Adler Berriman “Barry” Seal, prime mover in one of those just-declassified, you-couldn’t-make-it-up stories that sporadically fall into the hands of grateful producers.

A morally flexible TWA pilot handpicked by the CIA at the dog-end of the 1970s to assist with their Central American operations, Seal wound up flying for both the Agency and local drug cartels, profiting hugely from his own machinations while holding court with the likes of Pablo Escobar and Oliver North. Buffeting around inside the fuselage rather than clinging clench-jawed to its exterior, Cruise’s Seal is something like his “Top Gun” creation Maverick gone to seed; the welcome surprise of director Doug Liman’s film is that the character’s cockiness comes to be tested rather than hymned

 

Updated: September 5, 2017 — 1:27 pm

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