Jeff Smith 2 p.m., Dec. 18
Trailer Park: Day of the Falcon
Not to be confused withe Day of the Jackal or Day of the Triffids.
This film got made in 2011, but for whatever reason, it's coming out here in 2013. The premise isn't terrible - the discovery of oil in the Middle East ignites old tensions between Arab tribes, and forces traditional peoples to wrestle with modernity. But the execution looks...suspect. Partly because of casting. Remember the Yellowface outcry around Cloud Atlas? At least there was a reason for that - they wanted the same actors to appear in different times, places, personas, genders, etc. in order to manifest our shared humanity. Here? Well, let's take a look...
"Okay, our main guy? He's gotta be Arab. But not too Arab. Maybe that French dude whose family is from Algeria? Yeah, the cross between Keanu and Dylan McDermott. That guy."
"Phew! So much for the authentic bits. Now we can just go with your basic dark foreign types. I'm thinking Antonio Banderas. Hell, the Moors used to have the run of Spain, didn't they? He'll do fine."
"Now, for the love interest, we need someone dark and exotic, but still familiar. Freida Pinto! She's from India! That's practically in the Middle East! Perfect!"
"But you know what? I'm getting worried. We can't have the only white folks be the greedy Texans who come in looking for oil. Who's gonna want to see a movie like that? Let me see...got it! Remember how they stuck that Brit guy who played Obi-Wan Kenobi into the role of an Arab King in Lawrence of Arabia? We'll do an homage to that - nobody will be able to complain! How 'bout that Mark Strong fellow? Perfect! Let's go make a movie!"