Waist Deep review by Matt Fuerst


Here's a conclusion I came to recently: Not every movie can be great. On it's surface, that's a pretty obvious statement. We all understand that not every driver is great, we swear at a half dozen of them on the way to work. We understand not every co-worker is great, most of us look around at the mediocrity that surrounds us and chuckle or curse. But, other topics are a bit more touchy. You know what, not every mother is great. Not every brain surgeon is great. You certainly hope you get a good, sober one when your skull is being cracked open though. I now imagine film-makers at times, approach a project and from the first scene realize it isn't going to be their Oscar winner. So, when you're working on a turd, what exactly do you aspire to achieve? Well, that one is easy enough - polish up that turd.

With an introduction like that, you can probably deduce I didn't find Wait Deep to be the second coming of Citizen Kane. But, a flick like Waist Deep can be entertaining, and I was ready for some entertainment. I had a delicious pizza and a six pack of tasty beer to keep me company, when I popped the flick in. Our protagonist is O2 (Tyrese Gibson), a father separated from his son, working hard to better his life. While at work, O2 gets a call that his son is stranded at school and needs a ride. Being new at his job, O2 is already put into a no-win situation. O2 manages to make his way to pick up Junior (H. Hunter Hall), making a mental note to smack around his original ride, Uncle Lucky (Larenz Tate) at a later date.

Being an action movie, this is about all the setup we need, and it's all we get. Driving home with Junior, O2 is reasonably distracted by Coco (Meagan Good) hawking some suits on the street. This is simply a setup though, and next thing O2 knows, he is being carjacked, his ride squealing down the crowded street with Junior in the backseat. O2 has a hot momma, Coca, a handgun and his wits in order to get Junior back. Through Uncle Lucky's gangster connections, O2 learns there is already a large bounty on the life of his son. O2 is going to have to cut some corners, and in very quick fashion, in order to raise the 100 large to get Junior back.

So, the question is... does director Vonde Curtis-Hall manage to polish up this turd? Well, I am going to have to give him a failing grade, overall. It's not an awful movie by any stretch. I appreciate the effort, and a few scenes, teamed with the soundtrack deliver some excitement and thrills, but overall, you're going to spend more time wondering what could have been as opposed to what is actually happening. There are a few nice shootouts, a bit of a lackluster and humorous (not intentionally) chase scene with Los Angeles finest and a pretty sweet de-handing via machete but the film really doesn't deliver on either of it's intended fronts. As a pure action movie, it offers too many peaks and valleys. As an emotional father and son movie, it's far too shallow with respect to the relationships. Father and son get little screen time, and Coco, the bad-girl-gone-good serves little purpose other than to be attractive and "reactionary" like a typical Hollywood female (IE: cry here, your man is in trouble, it's scary).

Don't get me wrong, it's not an awful movie and I'm positive you've seen worse. If it sounds pretty interesting to you, give it a spin. The DVD transfer is sweet and very appealing. A lot of the scenes in urban LA are really well composed. There are a few extra goodies on the DVD like the "Making Of" the driving sequences and some discussions on the car selections and stuff.

4 out of 10 Jackasses
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