Ebert:1/2 Rolling Stone: TV Guide:1/2
minor plot points revealed!
I don't know what I was thinking when I went go see this movie. It's the sequel to the 1995 movie Get Shorty which I hated. I don't remember exactly why I hated it but if I recall, it was because it tried super hard to be super cool and ended up being super boring. Be Cool does a great job of following in Get Shorty's uninspiring footsteps.
The movie is basically about how Chili Palmer (Travolta), a former gangster, wants to move from movie producing to music producing. He gets a talented girl and then tries to promote her without getting killed by the other gangsters of the music industry.
I didn't necessarily hate this movie, it's just that I was actually forgetting it as I was watching it and that's never a good thing. Here's what I remember. John Travolta and Uma Thurman are horrible together. I hate the idea of them as a couple and when they do their little dance number, trying to recreate the Pulp Fiction thing, I was actually embarrassed for them. Vince Vaughn is the only fun character in the movie and you see all his best lines in the preview. The Rock plays a gay wannabe actor bodyguard. This is amusing for about 2 seconds but then you realize that The Rock's "gay" impression is more of a insult. It reminds me of the way a straight guy acts when he's mocking homosexuals. I don't like Cedric the Entertainer because he calls himself Cedric the Entertainer. It was disturbing to see Robert Pastorelli in the film because I thought he was dead. I just checked and he is. It's too bad this was one of his last films. Steven Tyler is a horrible actor. André 3000 was funny, but I like him more as the goofy guy in Outkast. Harvey Keitel was about the only character in the film that seemed real. And Christina Milian is cute but I'm sure they were probably trying to get Beyonce and couldn't schedule her or something.
Probably the thing I disliked the most about the movie was that the characters were all basically comedic roles but then almost all of them kill someone at some point during the film. Not in a funny way but in a hard way that is out of balance with the character they portrayed up to that point in the film. This is a discontinuity that makes the whole movie hard to watch.