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Thursday, July 27, 2006

Miami Vice

Posted on Thu, Jul 27, 2006 at 4:00 AM

**
Miami Vice
Studio: Universal Pictures Distribution
Rated: R
Cast: Jamie Foxx, Colin Farrell, Gong Li, Naomie Harris, Ciaràn Hinds
Director: Michael Mann
Screenwriter: Michael Mann
WorkNameSort: Miami Vice
Our Rating: 2.00

Michael Mann followed a two-word directive ' 'MTV copsâ?� ' when creating his fleetingly iconic TV series, but his big-screen update eschews the Nina Blackwood era's breathless pacing and pastel glamour in favor of hard-edged violence shot hand-held style. The approach worked better for the wildly inconsistent Mann in 2004's Collateral, a more intimate story that made the most of its seedy atmosphere; what's going on here is an off-kilter amalgam of '80s tube and YouTube. There's no real rhythm or ingenuity to the story, which has Crockett and Tubbs posing as dope couriers to bring down a megacartel, and you remain engaged in it mostly because the plot twists are so difficult to follow through the actors' Method muttering and/or thick accents. A running time of over two hours leaves plenty of room for Mann to indulge his worst qualities as a director, including the overheated sex he routinely substitutes for emotion. (These cops seldom shave, but they sure do shower a lot ' and apparently never alone.) With Jamie Foxx sleepwalking through a pre-Ray commitment, and Colin Farrell as the new Don Johnson ' as if you didn't know that already.

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