Gina Carano has charisma to spare, and it's little wonder Soderbergh felt driven to make a film in which he could showcase her.
I'm not a fight fan. Well, that's only part true. I don't watch MMA or UFC or really any sort of fighting, but that's because there are only so many hours in any given day, and I have to prioritize about what I do with my time. I always have more movies to watch. I always have something to read. I always have something I could be writing. I am constantly able to find something that I should be doing, and so the idea of spending a night watching fighting just doesn't fit into the timetable I've got set up.
I do like the actual sport of fighting, though. I grew up a boxing fan, and I see how boxing has evolved into these other major forms of organized fighting now. I can see why the audience is drawn to the other forms, and I can see why the stars that have emerged from this world are considered stars. There is a different level of physical engagement we see from these people, a different level of abuse that they seem willing to subject themselves to, and that's part of the thrill of MMA. We're impressed by these people because it seems completely deranged to voluntarily step into a ring where someone could beat the holy hell out of you and leave you unconscious with a torn rotator cuff within 45 seconds of starting. That's not a tornado I want to stick my arm into, thanks, so those who do it and who do it well are definitely to be admired.
For Carano, though, her ability to beat me unconscious with my own thigh bone is just part of her appeal. It is the contradictory nature of who she is that makes her so interesting. There's a sequence in "Haywire," the movie that she stars in that opens this weekend, where she has got to escape from somewhere, and it's a long complicated sequence involving rooftops and drain pipes and shimmying around ledges and running and jumping and, yes, some ass-beating. And in the whole scene, she handles herself physically with a precision and a believability that are impressive. But she also rocks the cutest hat in the world, and she looks pretty adorable the entire time. I should not be describing a Lee Marvin-style unrelenting badass as "adorable," but I think Soderbergh likes that dissonance, that clash between the aspects of who she is, and he plays to it.
Sitting down with her, I thought she was charming. This is as close to full-on flirt as you'll ever see from me in a junket setting. I was just plain enjoying the chat with this fascinating woman, and I think she's got a genuine career in film if she wants it. I have no idea if there will ever be another Gina Carano action movie, but I do know that if it gets made, I'll see it. She storms through this one like a star, and it's a real treat to sit down with anyone at this sort of turning-point moment in a career.
"Haywire" opens this Friday. Make sure you wear a cup.
2008 | Science Fiction | PGSummary: Animated series continues the story of Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker as they battle the Emperor Palpatine, Count Dooku and General Grievous, but also takes time to explore other smaller characters in the Star Wars universe.Director: George Lucas (creator)
Cast: Tom Kane, Dee Bradley Baker, Matt Lanter
1993 | Sports | PGSummary: Emotionally powerful sports classic featuring Sean Astin as a skinny high school kid with big football dreams and the determination to make his way towards his dream team at Notre Dame.Director: David Anspaugh
Cast: Sean Astin, Jon Favreau, Ned Beatty
2013 | Drama | RSummary: Leonardo DiCaprio and Jonah Hill have boundless energy in the story of a real-life commodities crook who earned millions through scummy small-time stock trades.Director: Martin Scorsese
Cast: Leonardo DiCaprio, Jonah Hill, Margot Robbie
1995 | Mystery | NRSummary: Denzel Washington plays an out of work WWII vet who takes the wrong job and is soon neck-deep in a mess of politics, murder, and jazz in '40s Los Angeles.Director: Carl Franklin
Cast: Denzel Washington, Tom Sizemore, Jennifer Beals
1997 | Crime | RSummary: Quentin Tarantino adaptats an Elmore Leonard novel into this story of a few increasingly desperate people scraping to get by. It has deep soul, a wicked sense of humor, and Samuel L. Jackson, Robert De Niro, Pam Grier, and Robert Forster.Director: Quentin Tarantino
Cast: Pam Grier, Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Forster
2007 | Comedy | PGSummary: Newlyweds Nick (Ice Cube) and Suzanne (Long) decide to move to the suburbs to provide a better life for their two kids. But their idea of a dream home is disturbed by a contractor (McGinley) with a bizarre approach to business.Director: Steve Carr
Cast: John C. McGinley, Ice Cube, Nia Long, Aleisha Allen
2013 | Thriller | RSummary: Based on the true story of Daniel Lugo (Mark Wahlberg) a Miami bodybuilder who wants to live the American dream. He would like to have the money that other people have. So he enlists the help of fellow bodybuilder Adrian Doorbal (Anthony Mackie) and ex-convict, Christian bodybuilder Paul Doyle (D...Director: Michael Bay
Cast: Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, Anthony Mackie, Tony Shalhoub
1996 | Crime | RSummary: Jerry, a small-town Minnesota car salesman is bursting at the seams with debt... but he's got a plan. He's going to hire two thugs to kidnap his wife in a scheme to collect a hefty ransom from his wealthy father-in-law. It's going to be a snap and nobody's going to get hurt... until people start ...Director: Joel Coen, Ethan Coen
Cast: William H. Macy, Frances McDormand, Steve Buscemi, Peter Stormare
2013 | Comedy | NRSummary: Insanely funny comedy show created by Amy Schumer, who stars in brilliantly funny sketches about sex, city living, dating, and friendship.Director: Daniel Powell, Amy Schumer (creators)
Cast: Amy Schumer, Kevin Kane, Mike Houston
Let Streaming Genie help you.