How can you have a film with Edward Norton, Robert De Niro, Milla Jovovich and Frances Conroy and it not be fantastic? Not too mention, Edward Norton has had an excellent track record, over the years, of not making any films that were garbage. If I was to watch one of his films, I was pretty much expecting to see something great. 'Stone' is in no way a bad movie.... it just seemed to not quite live up to his usual standards. It was a well done movie, that just suffered from a slow moving and uninteresting script and a story that you ultimately just don't care too much about. It's kind of like watching a Nascar race waiting for a wreck, but it never happens and you leave feeling like you saw something neat, but it never paid off in any way. I watched the whole thing waiting for a hook or a big twist or turn or something. Maybe if I'd known in advance that it was just a slow boiler of a movie, I might have understood it and enjoyed it more, you know? I suppose you can't have a perfect record forever. Edward Norton played a similar character to what he did in 'American History X' or 'Primal Fear'. It felt kind of like old territory.
Here is the plot according to http://www.imdb.com: "Parole officer Jack Mabry (Robert De Niro) has only a few weeks left before retirement and wishes to finish out the cases he's been assigned. One such case is that of Gerald "Stone" Creeson (Edward Norton), a convicted arsonist who is up for parole. Jack is initially reluctant to indulge Stone in the coarse banter he wishes to pursue and feels little sympathy for the prisoner's pleads for an early release. Seeing little hope in convincing Jack himself, Stone arranges for his wife Lucetta (Milla Jovovich) to seduce the officer, but motives and intentions steadily blur amidst the passions and buried secrets of the corrupted players in this deadly game of deception." This makes it sound more interesting than it was. Maybe I just wasn't paying enough attention?
I'm hoping that one of you out there saw this and enjoyed it. I have a feeling that I'm going to re-visit it again in the next decade, as I truly feel like I missed something with this movie. I just can't belive that all of this talent could make something so luke warm. You have this strange relationship between De Niro and Norton's character and when they add Milla's character into the mix, it just gets odd. She is such a stand out performance compared to everyone else that she kind of overshadows the bland plot. De Niro feels like he's sleepwalking and Norton feels like he has been out of work for a decade, which he hasn't. Finally, Frances Conroy, was Frances Conroy.... smoking cigarettes. The potential of this cast and movie were huge. If you see this movie and find a different experience than what I found, please drop me a line and fill me in on what you saw and got out of this movie. Please.
When the smoke cleared and all was said and done, I still gave this a 3 out of 5 star rating. It wasn't bad, but it wasn't good. It just made me long for other films from these actors. I am still looking forward to what everyone involved has coming up next, as there is a lot of potential in this movie. In the meantime, I'm going to continue wondering to myself what went wrong with 'Stone' (2010)? Avaialable OnDemand or to rent.