Journey to the End of the Night Reviews
However, Fraser does not single-handedly ruin the movie, though his performance was capable of doing that. The plot is wafer-thin too. Tries too hard to be gritty and instead ends up a random, gratuitous-violence filled mess. Just seems to drift along haphazrdly with no point at all.
Mos Def's performance is one of the few positive aspects of the movie. Quite convincing.
Scott Glenn is pretty solid in his role too.
Other plus is that the movie is reasonably short...
I love the camera work in the film, the acting was great, and I like the story of these characters, people who are trying to escape the ugliness in their lives. It's interesting to see how these characters respond to the circumstances that are put upon them.
The film has a spicy plot, with a bunch of unruly characters all angling for possession of a suitcase full of cocaine or, later, a bag full of money. Worst of the lot is Fraser's character, Paul, who is even willing to knock off dear old dad if it means he gets to keep the cash to himself.
Filmed on location in Sao Paulo, this is a dark and brooding film about the destructive power of greed. It's seedy, and laden with characters that are very easy to dislike. Scott Glenn is effective as the father, and the two Latinas in prominent supporting roles, Alice Braga and Catalina Saldino Moreno, are very good. Mos Def is enjoyable, and he develops a tangible chemistry with Braga during their short time on screen together.
The film really leans on Fraser's ability to pull off his character. We need to truly despise Paul in order for us to have any emotional investment in how things turn out. But Fraser can't pull it off. He has his moments, but his key scenes late in the movie seem to be out of his reach. The result is an interesting movie, suspenseful at times, but with nothing to really care about in the end.