|DVD The Bannen Way
Run time: 93 min
Genres: Action | Comedy | Thriller
Director: Jesse Warren
Writers: Jesse Warren, Mark Gantt
Stars: Mark Gantt, Vanessa Marcil, Gabriel Tigerman
A slick, sexy, action-packed show about Neal Bannen, a charming con-man with a police chief for a father, a mob boss for an uncle and a weakness for beautiful women, who wants to turn his life around and leave the criminal lifestyle forever. Written by Anonymous
|Plot Keywords: con man, mob boss, sex, thief, web series|
Release Date: 6 January 2010 (USA)
This movie is a nightmarish amalgamation of hackneyed premises too numerous to list in their entirety, but here are a few: Our hero/anti-hero is a slick charmer who's indebted to several crime bosses at once, coordinates elaborate plans to do the impossible with the help of his computer geek sidekick/guardian angel, sleeps with lots of women and narrowly avoids getting killed by some of them, and of course the cops want him too.
This film would've at least been a neatly-packaged directorial debut had it stuck to all that, but it got greedy: On top of all those other clichés, we then get a twist wherein we learn that nothing was what it seemed. That's when I started getting antsy, wishing the movie would end, which is never a good sign.
Some movies get made because someone has an idea and wants to see it come to life. Then there are the pictures that get made because someone with the right resources decided they simply wanted to make a movie, so they proceed to try and formulate some sort of film by borrowing elements that have proved successful in other films. This is one of the latter, and the result in this case is bland, mild entertainment, at best.
Nevertheless, I get the feeling that everyone involved has the talent, even if the drive is missing. As The Oracle would say, "You've got the gift, but it looks like you're waiting for something". The film is shot with an unoriginal yet well-executed style. The same staff/cast with a decent idea that everyone actually cared about could probably pull off a respectable movie. This unfortunately wasn't it.
I couldn't figure out why in the world this guy was the lead – he's supposed to be a studly womanizer who women see and just fall all over as if he's James Bond yet he looks like he should be managing a Home Depot. Sure enough, he's the writer. Should have figured. This seems to be a common trend now – a writer writes himself a big part that he's terribly miscast for, gets the movie funded and gets it to DVD.
This one is pretty bad. It's got so many clichés, there isn't one ounce of originality and worst off is the stupid "printed out rules while the action freeze frames for a second" which isn't clever or interesting. There's tons of bad flash cuts, quick edits, the same old "play the bad guys against each other in completely unbelievable ways that wouldn't actually happen" and every other unoriginal Guy Richie cliché tossed in here. This stuff is done so much now that when you see it done again you wonder if these people watch any other movies? But again, the worst part was how women would just fall all over this guy and that was far and away the most unbelievable part. If you're sitting there going "oh come on" every three minutes, it's not a good sign.
A slick, sexy, action-packed show about Neal Bannen, a charming con-man with a police chief for a father, a mob boss for an uncle and a weakness for beautiful women, who wants to turn his life around and leave the criminal lifestyle forever. Let me get this off my chest right off the bat. A huge problem I have with these web series watched on Crackle is that you're forced to watch about 90 seconds of ads before you watch the 6 minute show. And let's not forget that the titles are at least 30 seconds, maybe a minute. What becomes worse is that once you get the pilot behind you, these bozos add about another minute to 90 seconds of flashbacks for each episode because they think you son't remember what happens in 5 minutes of footage you just watched! Oh, and there's another minute of titles at the end. So the actual programming is about 4 minutes or less. It's so annoying. OK, on with the review. Truth is, there is nothing special about this show. It follows the same boring tired format that all these shows want to follow.
Pretentious lady's man gets in and out of trouble. Lots of narration to explain the plot because the producers think we're too stoned to understand. I'd rather they not make this trash than waste out time. This show is no better or worse than any of the others. And that's not saying much. Hint: when you try so hard to be kewl, it just means you're not kewl.
When you consider that this "movie" is really a collection of back to back webisodes, it is quite an achievement. This movie is really a Season 1 DVD played back to back, so of course there will be harsh transitions and rapid fire pacing in keeping with the style of all webisodes.
There were 13 episodes, and each ep was about 5-6 minutes. When you consider the origin of this "movie", this is a marvel. It has style, it has pretty decent dramatic pacing (esp. for a web series)- I think it would be better if this thing is viewed as a Season One disc rather than a stand alone movie, because that's what it is. Is there anything "new" or cutting edge? Only that it was a web series and a successful one at that. I am not sure how one gets all those actors to star in such a thing, and I am sure the writers were in the middle of uncharted territory, so I would be interested if this series continues. As it stands, don't view the Bannan Way as a clichéd mob movie but rather an indication of things to come from the world of web series.