Galactic Fleet Admiral (site admin)
Joined: 14 Dec 2013
Location: North Carolina
|Posted: Tue Feb 05, 2019 2:22 pm Post subject: Swordfish (2001)
They tried a variaty of posters for this movie. This is the official one.
But this one appeals more to the artist in me.
And this one speaks loud and clear to the Dirty Old Man in me!
Is this movie science fiction?
Well, let's consider the pluses.
The cast includes John Travola from the highly regarded Battlefield Earth (just kiddin’), the awesome Halle Berry form the popular Cat Woman (at least in France, I think), and Hugh Jackman from a few of those movies with X in the titles.
And the plot is about brilliant people (both good and bad) who use cutting-edge computers to devise brilliant plans and make bureaucrats look like morons.
Science fiction? Sure! (Come on, admit it. I had you at Halle Berry. )
In this entertaining movie, the sharpest thing about Hugh Jackman is his brain, rather than his adamantium Lee Press-on Nails. But John Travolta’s character is even smarter, and he establishes that fact in the opening seen, which dazzles the audience with a special effect that shows a poor hostage wired with C4 and wrapped in ball bearings blown up in the middle of a street, blasting dozens of policemen, federal officers, and cars in a 360° slow-motion shot that is absolutely mesmerizing.
IMDB has 53 trivia items, and I found several that are very interesting, shown below in the blue text.
~ Halle Berry agreed to the topless scene - ostensibly for an extra fee of 500,000 dollars - because she wanted to overcome her fear of doing nude scenes. This was on top of her initial fee of two million dollars.
Note from me: For half-a-million dollars I’d pose nude in Macy’s window all day long during the Thanksgiving Sale!
~ The opening scene of Swordfish is the most complicated visual effect in Warner Brothers history. It was shot using Matrix-like effects (The Matrix (1999)) by Frantic Films of Winnipeg, Manitoba. The effect has so many composites in it, that the producers and director of the film, could not determine what was real, and what was created by computer.
Note from me: Yes, indeed, this is an amazing scene. And it comes near the beginning of the movie, so we know we’re in for a wild cinematic ride!
~ John Travolta and Hugh Jackman both love to sing show tunes. On set, they often sang songs from Oklahoma! and other musicals together.
Note from me: Since Hugh starred on Broadway as Curly in Oklahoma, I’ll bet those duets could be sold on CDs! “Travola and Jackman sing Rogers and Hammerstein!”
Consider these next to items in relation to one another and you’ll understand why the bus-beneath-the-helicopter was done with an FX instead in reality.
~ The scene in which the bus is swung, was actually shot by hiring a group of people to sit in a bus, in front of a blue screen, while they swung the bus from a crane. According to the Stunt Coordinators, the same effect could have been portrayed for half the cost.
Vinnie Jones was going to do a stunt, but John Travolta stopped him, and a stuntman did it instead. The wire broke, and the stuntman fell sixty to seventy feet onto a concrete floor, breaking his spine.
Note from me: “Oh hell, guys, let’s just have a helicopter carry a real bus over the city! What could possibly go wrong?”
~ Helga's tall blonde friend is played by Natalia Sokolova, Playboy's Playmate of the Month for April, 1999.
Note from me: Hmmm . . . Let me think, now which tall blond was that? Oh, right! This sweet young lady.
_______________________ Swordfish hack
~ The title is a reference to computer passwords in movies from Hackers (1995) to The Net (1995). It comes from Horse Feathers (1932), where Groucho Marx uses it to get into a speakeasy.
Note from me: As soon as I read this item I remembered a scene in the wonderful direct-to-video movie by Full Moon pictures called Arena, in which the four-armed alien named Shorty (the hero’s comic sidekick) gains entrance to an exclusive club by giving the doorman the password “swordfish”. I never knew it was a gag reference to a Marx brothers’ movie!
~ Bridget Moynahan turned down the part later taken by Halle Berry because of what she considered to be gratuitous nudity.
Note from me: Miss Moynahan is mistaken. One of the two definitions listed for gratuitous is “something given or done free of charge”. Holle got a cool half-million for the nude scene. That’s a hell of a gratuity for services rendered, eh?
Is there no man on Earth who has the wisdom and innocence of a child?