Starring: Samuel L. Jackson, Ben Affleck, Toni Collette,
Sydney Pollack, William Hurt, Kim Staunton and Amanda Peet.
Directed by: Roger Mitchell
Lanes is an incredibly enthralling celluloid road trip that delivers
at about 100mph! Jackson and Affleck command their screen with
a mix of flawless timing and impeccable performances! Bravo!
Lanes makes your bad day look like a walk through an improperly
air-conditioned store in comparison. These two fellows, Doyle
Gipson (Samuel L. Jackson) and Gavin Banek (Ben -call Emily Blunt
today-Affleck) and are having the Mutha F****er of bad days after
they collide on a freeway...
Gipson, a plain generic seeming fellow, is on his way to a court
case that will decide his future standing with his beloved sons
in a custody case. He's under pressure and feeling a tad anxiety
ridden when he is sideswiped in his car by Gavin Banek in his
car-- while attempting to change lanes.
Banek is Doyle's yang; a smart-dressed, fast talking, razor edged
attorney. Gavin is also on his way to court, but for his large
high-powered Wall Street sharky law firm.
has their own stress filled day staring them in the face. Neither
needed an accident to start the morning off with...
today's case, Gavin's career is on an upswing. All he's doing
today is serving signature papers on a 100 million dollar trust
fund for an old friend and philanthropist. Doyle's life, on the
other hand is on a downswing. If he has any hope of seeing his
sons weekly or monthly, he's got to convince a judge he's worthy
in his case today. Being late probably won't make him a canidate
for "dad of the year" or a favorite with the court.
Doyle begs Gavin to give him his insurance card- quickly- so they
can do this right and proper. Gavin can't find it and decides
it's easier to just pay-off Doyle via a blank check for his troubles
says no way Jose
he's changing his ways and insists they
do it buy the book blah-blah-blah.
and not in any mood to help save Doyle's suffering soul, Gavin
barks at the Dudley Doright, "better luck next time,"
as he leaps into his slightly bruised Mercedes and speeds away.
Doyle, his Gremlinesque car totaled, is left standing like a schmuck
in the middle of the freeway, and inevitably late for his pending
custody case. He notices Attorney Boy dropped a file and almost
just reactionary, picks it up.
of them, thanks to the brief nasty encounter, have some 'splaining
to do in their courts. Both of them end up with anything but decisions
in their favor. Gavin needed that file, desperately to proceed,
and Doyle needed the twenty minutes Gavin's fleeing the scene
stole from him to proceed.
Gavin's attempt at retreiving the file from Doyle ends in a firm
call to arms, the nasty paybacks begin. The two set off in a petty
dangerous tussle of tremendous proportions. Each trying to out
do the other until things escalate to the absurd. Tempers boil,
and trouble toils. The scariest part is how real these men and
their reactions to each other seem. This could happen,
any day in any place...
L. Jackson's as super duper as always. Man, this guy oozes
sweet, sweet talent like a double fudge banana sundae that the
clerk was heavy handed with! Delicious. He's been around
a long time, but it's the last decade has given the actor his
just rewards for maintaining integrity in film making. Rent anything
with his name and you'll get a treat.
And I admit it
I have an Afflecktion. I am addicted
to this Ben fellow. I loved him in Bounce,
drooled over him in Dogma, and needed
a tranquilizer in Pearl Harbor to calm
my excitement what with the military uniform and all... Yeah,
he's my brand of man heroin baby! Tall, clean cut and that
oh-so-tasty combo of brains and brawn! But, Afflecktion aside,
Benny's a damn good actor too. And Changing Lanes may be his best
performance to date.
women around the bickering duo, Amanda Peet as Gavin's power hungry
wife, Toni Collette as his mistress, and Kim Staunton as Doyle's
confused, co-dependent, wife did great jobs. They played women
that were not glamorous in the least, and that was refreshing
(especially in Peet's case). Each was so real and completely believable
that they kept the insanity of the men's antics grounded.
and Sydney Pollack appear in smaller roles as a little thespian
best thing about Changing Lanes is the film's relentlessly rapid
pace which properly mirrors the subject matter; how impatience
and misunderstanding can blow out of proportions rapidly and within
minutes if not handled maturely and calmly.
thin subplot also, shows two guys who after this day, can change
the lanes...the paths, their lives are on, if they chose so.
this you'll definitely think twice about treating the other driver
on your road like a jackass! Enjoy!
Snack recommendation: Snapper and Starbucks Grande Latte.