The Matador




Greg Kinnear and Pierce Brosnan in The Matador

Pierce Brosnan "obviously likes playing an engaging sociopath, and heís good at it.

"'The Matador' arrives in theaters just in time to cop the prize as the yearís oddest comedy - essentially a buddy movie about an assassin and his unlikely friendship with a struggling, straight-arrow Denver businessman, Greg Kinnearís Danny Wright."--Jack Mathews, seacoastonline.com


"Shepard's film is funny, stylish and beguilinly dodgy, traits embodied by leading man Brosnan, delivering perhaps the most impressive performance of his career as burnt-out hitman Julian Noble."--Dan Dunn in the Boston Metro


"Julian Noble, the rude yet amiable bisexual hit man he plays, is a slob, a drunk, and a loser. In the funniest sight in the whole picture, the camera tracks him staggering drunk through a posh hotel lobby in Mexico City wearing skimpy black underwear. He kicks off his cowboy boots and plops into the pool, sounding the typical movie alarm for midlife crisis.

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"Hope Davis plays Danny's uptight wife, and when Brosnan arrives, her performance heats up with carnal wonder. (Her disappointment that Julian is packing only a .38 is hilarious.) Yet the movie doesn't give her, or anyone else, a shot at real mischief. It's all talk.

"This is unfortunate, as Julian and Danny's relationship could head anywhere. They could go into business together. They could hop into bed. But 'The Matador' is not that bold, even though it more or less shares a title with Pedro Almodovar's wildly vulgar 1986 screwball comedy.

"Writer-director Richard Shepard's movie is just a sweet, broadly made buddy picture that happens to look a lot like an Almodovar production. The film has a vibrant pop style: The colors burst off the screen, the editing rhythms are precise and absorbing, and you could almost cha-cha with the camera's movement. Shepard's 'Matador' demonstrates what an Almodovar picture would feel like without his gonzo sensibility. It's Almodovar for heterosexuals."
--Wesley Morris in the Boston Globe.


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