Desert Thriller Mojave Will Test The Limits Of Your Love For Oscar Isaac.

Mojave.
Director: William Monahan.
Writer: William Monahan.
Cast: Oscar Isaac, Garrett Hedlund, Walton Goggins, Mark Wahlberg.
Playing At: AMC Mesquite.

“Can I indulge in a little intellectual bullshit?” Jack (Oscar Isaac) asks Thomas (Garrett Hedlund) late into Mojave, the disastrous new film from writer-director William Monahan.

And boy, does he ever.

Thomas is a successful writer-director himself, with a beautiful house but estranged from his wife and daughter. He's got a lot of money, but not much in the way of inner peace.

“When you have everything you want, then what?” he asks a reporter, before driving off to the desert to “find himself.”

There, he crosses paths with Jack, which is where things get disastrous. Mojave is a much more interesting movie when it briefly toys with the theory that Jack might be the Devil incarnate. Once it becomes obvious that Jack is both real and physically dangerous — instead of just intellectually bothersome — the movie gets dumber and dumber in a hurry. Jack continues to stalk Thomas even after that initial encounter, constantly changing his appearance and seemingly staying one step ahead of Thomas, despite knowing very little about him. Little in Mojave makes sense — and, even worse, there's not much reason to care.

Writer-director William Monahan made profane poetry in his script for The Departed, for which he won the Oscar. But every line of dialogue here seems painfully forced, especially since nearly every character serves as Monahan's mouthpiece, decrying the Internet and cell phones way too often for a movie that's ultimately just an L.A. murder mystery.

Mark Wahlberg and Walton Goggins show up, presumably as a favor to Monahan, as Thomas's producer and agent, respectively. But what are they really doing there? Who knows? Neither of them really serves a purpose. They both get scenes, as do Isaac and Hedlund, where they spouts monologues to no one in particular, saying the most banal garbage.

Beyond the dreadful script, the casting is way off. Garrett Hedlund, like Sam Worthington and Jai Courtney before him, continues to be cast in movies despite being indistinguishable from a six-foot-tall slab of granite. I don't buy him as a “troubled artist,” sorry. But Mojave will also test the limits of your love for Oscar Isaac, which I thought had no bounds. Here, he leans too far into the crazy, going into Nicolas Cage territory.

It's not a good look.

Mojave is getting rightfully buried in January and on DirecTV, where you can currently watch it on demand. Leave it there to die.

Grade: D-.

8463_2

8463_3

8463_4

8463_5

8463_6

8463_7

8463_8

8463_9

8463_10

8463_11

8463_12

8463_13

8463_14

8463_15

8463_16

8463_17

8463_18

8463_19

8463_20

8463_21

8463_22

8463_23

8463_24

8463_25

8463_26

8463_27

8463_28

8463_29

8463_30

8463_31

8463_32

8463_33

8463_34

8463_35

8463_36

8463_37

8463_38

8463_39

8463_40

8463_41

8463_42

8463_43

8463_44

8463_45

8463_46

8463_47

8463_48

8463_49

8463_50

No more articles
X