There was a time that Out of Sight was the film I referred to as ‘the one where Lopez wears the Shorts’. That was over a decade ago, and since then a big booty has become embraced by the mainstream (so to speak), and developments like Kim Kardashian, Beyonce, Vida Guerra and women’s beach volleyball have essentially nullified J-Lo’s only asset. I mean she seems a reprehensible ego fuelled diva with no discernible acting nor singing ability.
…Which leaves the entirely credible crime thriller her indisputable career high point.
The strange thing is that when she made this she wasn’t far removed from being Jenny from the Block. In fact this film didn’t make much money at all despite being well received critically. Ironically it was only once she started multi-tasking her awfulness across a series of genres where she has proved ill qualified that her personal wealth increased from ‘a little to a lot’.
Sad how her success increased as the entertainment value decreased…
Jack Foley (George Clooney) is a career bank robber. Smart, super smooth and with a personal ethos of non-violence, the one thing Jack is not is lucky, which is why he has been in and out of prison for the bulk of his adult life.
It is in prison that Jack’s smarts and gregarious nature make him contacts. conversely Jack found Karen Sisco (Lopez), a US Marshall who happened to be sitting in her parked car, outside of prison. And when I say ‘out of prison’ I actually mean ‘in the parking lot as he emerged from an escape tunnel.
This immediately complicates matters, but what could have been a go straight back to jail card turns into a ‘wrong place, wrong time, right trunk’ situation, as rather than hang around to get recaptured, Jack and his outside contact (and longtime partner) Buddy (Ving Rhames) bundle her into the trunk of her car, and a muddied and ‘just escaped from prison’ looking Jack squeezes right in alongside her.
This ten odd minute scene of forced proximity between two good looking individuals has become stuff of cinema legend, and regularly appears on Most Steamy or Sexiest Moments list ever since.
From here on in you can either;
1/ ignore the fact that she is a shitty Marshall who constantly allows the dreamy eyed bandido to go free and he is a lousy crook who constantly puts his freedom and that of buddy Buddy, in jeopardy over a chick.
2/ enjoy the film.
And despite the presence of Jennifer Lopez I opted for 2.
The intricate and occasionally convoluted plot revolves around the plotting and execution of a robbery in Detroit, which aside from the aforementioned Jack and Buddy, also involves menacing Maurice (Don Cheadle), hapless and out of his depth Glenn (Steve Zahn) and an unwitting wealthy Richard Ripley (Albert Brooks).
But in this case the substance is secondary to the style. While I found Steve Zahn’s character annoying and can’t swallow Don Cheadle as a scary, hard as nails type (as well as my obvious distaste for all things J-Lo), the film moved at rapid pace and was always immaculately presented.
Director Steven Soderbergh had a few visual flourishes up his sleeve, the editing is quite creative, and David Holmes made sure the soundtrack is as sexy and chilled as the action onscreen.
Final Rating 7.5 / 10. While I don’t think Out of Sight is as good a thriller as it is made out to be – and the final sequence is pretty silly – it is as exceptionally stylish, confident and yes, sexy a crime film that you will see.