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Pain and Gain (2013) Reviewed By Jay

United States, 08 March 2013


Jay´s Review

Based on forty-four Miami New Times newspaper articles by Pete Collins in 1999, this black dramedy is far, far stranger than fiction. As a matter of fact, the real-life participants are less than thrilled with big-budget producer/director Michael Bay's goofy low-budget take on these events.

We see three dim-bulb bodybuilders in Florida who are caught up in an extortion and kidnapping plot because the ringleader is inspired by a motivational speaker (played by Ken Jeong). This knucklehead doesn't want to be "as good as," he wants to be "better than."

Here is the cast:

  • * Mark Wahlberg ("Broken City") sincerely believes in "The American Way." As things go terribly wrong, he blunders around trying to fix them and only makes matters worse, and worse, and worse.
  • * Dwayne Johnson ("Snitch") found The Lord in prison and would have stayed on the straight and narrow if only it hadn't been for that doggone cocaine. He sings Amazing Grace.
  • * Anthony Mackie ("Gangster Squad") has the best shot at a normal life, but he has spent so much on that gorgeous house.....
  • * Ed Harris ("Man on a Ledge") is a retired detective pulled into the case because the police think it sounds too outrageous. Harris does great comedy because he is soooo deadpan!
  • * Tony Shalhoub ("Monk") is a seriously difficult victim. Even when he is kidnapped and tortured, we end up laughing in spite of ourselves, shades of the Coen Brothers.

This film is rated R, based on the violence, blood, profanity and discussion of body parts. You'll even see some blowie uppie stuff and gunfire, but brace yourself, because you WILL laugh. I'm embarrassed to admit it, but I did.

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