By JENNIFER WARDELL
Clipper Staff Writer
Rated PG-13 for drug content and sequences of violence.
Starring Dwayne Johnson, Barry Pepper, Jon Bernthal, Michael Kenneth, Melina Kanakaredes, Nadine Velazquez, Rafi Gavron, David Harbour, Benjamin Bratt, Susan Sarandon.
Written by Justin Haythe and Ric Roman Waugh.
Directed by Ric Roman Waugh.
The Rock is in over his shiny bald head, and the drug dealers have nothing to do with it.
In “Snitch,” the ex-wrestler plays a hapless father attempting to take down a major cartel in order to keep his son out of jail. While the trailers make it look like the usual crash-and-smash action flick, the movie is really more of a gritty moral drama where everyone is forced to make terrible choices. It needs a leading man who can really express his character’s helpless fear and determination, and The Rock just can’t quite pull it off.
He tries, poor man. His love for his teenage son comes across as genuine, as does his impatience with his estranged ex-wife. But Dwayne Johnson (The Rock’s real name) doesn’t have a wide range of facial expressions to choose from, and he’s incapable of communicating the full emotional weight of the decisions his character has to make. Since it’s his desperation and love driving the main plot, the entire movie suffers as a result.
It’s sad, because “Snitch” has some potentially important things to say about the fairness of drug sentencing. But the movie needed a better actor at its heart in order to get the message across.