Brian Henry Martin at the movies

What happened to Bruce?

Published Thursday, 19 April 2012
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He was once our favourite wisecracking action hero. Now his movie career seems to be heading from Planet Hollywood to the dark side of Moonlighting. Can his new film bring him out from under the boardwalk?

The Cold Light Of Day is one of a startling six films starring Bruce Willis that will be released in 2012. I say starring but 57-year-old Willis has become more of a supporting actor these days than a leading man.

The Cold Light Of Day is no exception, Willis plays the hard-boiled father of rising star Henry Cavill, who plays a young American businessman caught up in a hot-blooded thriller set in Spain.

This is the Bourne Inferior, a race against time to find a mysterious briefcase through the streets of Madrid. If anyone has any idea of the plot or the point to any of this, answers on a postcard please.

Cavill has a lot to prove on the big screen, the former star of The Tudors has just been cast as the new Superman in Man Of Steel, which will be released in 2013. Based on this flat performance, Cavill will have no problem playing Clark Kent, Superman may be a super stretch.

This is a walk on, walk through role for Bruce Willis; a bit part in a below par TV movie. This is the kind of character that Willis could do with his eyes closed. In fact, much better if he did close his eyes and we closed ours too and dreamt up a better script than this hapless sangria.

When he speaks, Willis squints his eyes and looks off into the distance; he must know this dialogue is terrible. "There'll be good winds tomorrow" he says vaguely. Let's hope so, says us, blow the dust off this nonsense. "Don't treat me like an idiot" says Cavill to Willis. Agreed, says us. Please Bruce don't waste your time on this pulp fiction.

Earlier this month, Bruce Willis became a father for the fourth time, so off-screen he certainly has not lost his va-va-voom. On-screen he has been slip sliding away in a succession of mediocre movies.

Any sixth sense he once had for picking a great script has clearly deserted him. Never mind seeing dead people, dead-beat scripts is what he has to look out for.

Willis has made nearly one hundred films but yet there is one role he can't shake, his best performance as John McClane in Die Hard. So there's no surprise that he is returning once again to the smart talking New York Cop. A Good Day To Die Hard is currently in pre-production for release in 2013.

If I was Bruce Willis in the cold light of day, I would be asking my agent to try hard, in fact try harder, in fact try harder with a vengeance to get me great parts in much better movies with talented directors.

The Cold Light Of Day (Cert 12a) is currently on general release.


© UTV News
B. H. Martin
B. H. Martin

Brian Henry Martin is an accomplished documentary filmmaker and UTV's resident film critic, appearing regularly on UTV Live Tonight.

No matter what the film, there's a good chance Brian has seen it.


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