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Smokin’ Aces (2006)


Duration 1h 49m Rating (UK) 18
Source of story An original screenplay
Director Joe Carnahan
Writers/Script Joe Carnahan
Starring Ryan Reynolds, Ray Liotta, Joseph Ruskin, Jeremy Piven, Ben Affleck, Peter Berg, Common, Andy Garcia, Alicia Keyes, Tajari P. Henderson, Chris Pine, Joel Edgerton, Jason Bateman,

Elevator Pitch: Buddy Israel, a Las Vegas magician with mafia links, is holed up in the penthouse of a Lake Tahoe hotel, after agreeing with the FBI to spill the beans about the mob. Hence the mob boss puts a price of a million dollars on his head, attracting a variety of bailbondsmen, killers and professional assassins, and one of them is tasked with the removal of the magicians heart.  When the FBI team given the job of looking after Buddy learn of the contract they race to the hotel, but will they be in time to take on the killers and save the day.

Content: Drug taking, drinking and nudity but no sex. A lot of shooting with all sorts of firearms including a sniper rifle, plus a chain saw, an axe and a flame thrower. We see the assassins at work before they take on the job. The FBI guys grouse a bit, their boss frequently updates us on the plot by means of a staff briefing, Buddy gradually falls apart and the killers circle round him, but he magically seems to survive while the upper floors of the hotel are destroyed by gunfire. The reveal takes place, but goes on for ages.

A View: This is terrific stuff, even if it is just a bit too complex to follow all the strands, but that hardly matters. I particularly liked the female assassins, one with the sniper rifle the other pretending to be a hooker. The pretend hooker, Georgia, meets the most extreme trio of assassins, the Tremors, when an elevator door opens. There is a brief silence. Georgia “I’m going down”. Darwin Tremor “I bet you are”. Brilliant. The critics did not like it much, predicably, but if you enjoy shoot’em ups it is worth a download price.

Additional Info: It made money but the number which impresses is the sale of $35 million worth of DVDs!

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels



  1. Pingback: Enemy at the Gates (2001) | A MOTION PICTURE LIST - December 13, 2021

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