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plunkett & macleane marks the directing debut of jake scott , brother of ridley and tony .
naturally , this got me worried .
would jake's talent be inherited from ridley or tony ?
if it was from ridley , than the movie would be a thoughtful suspensor with action thrown in .
if it was from tony , it would be wham bang drivel .
unfortunately , the latter is true for this worthless picture with little charm .
carlyle and miller are the titular highwaymen , plunkett ( carlyle ) who is poor and unruly , and captain james macleane ( miller ) a clean cut gentleman .
as the tagline clearly wants to make known , they rob the rich and nothing else .
the film basically follows the rowdy hold ups the two stage , along with romantic interludes with lady rebecca ( tyler . )
hot on both their tails is mr chance ( ken stott ) who wants to see them both dead .
plunkett & macleane is an annoying little film that serves little purpose .
although undoubtedly slick and fast paced , there's very little merit contained in the film .
carlyle and miller are fun enough as the foul mouthed pair , although their characters are criminally undeveloped .
it appears that much of the money has been spent on the expensive looking sets and costumes , but not on the script .
the five ( ! ) screenwriters ( three credited ) have produced an still born movie : there's very little development in the story .
also , major events , such as mr . cash finding out who plunkett and macleane really are , are so rushed that they barely happened .
the story is a bit of a mess , frankly .
the performances aren't bad : carlyle and miller are typical lads , but liv tyler is a huge disappointment as the love interest .
her irritable , stilted performance sticks out like a sore thumb , and i was quite unsure on what accent she was trying to put on .
she looks nice , though .
more interesting is alan cummings as the campy lord rochester , and although his character amounts to nothing more than a two dimensional comedy gay character , he hams it up well .
ken stott is suitably evil as chance , but again he is nothing but a flat character .
i didn't particularly care when the predictable death sequence arrived .
although a disappointment in writing , and a minor success in acting , the film certainly look lavish , with good costumes , and wonderful sets .
but production design alone can't save a movie , especially a movie as bad as this mess .
jake scott would be more suited to directing a music video rather than this failed update of a period drama : the only update seems to be the fact that everyone must talk dirty , with 'f * ck this' and 'stand and f * cking deliver' splattered all over the place .
the mtv editing and direction are flash enough , but in the end decidedly empty .
plunkett & macleane is a massive disappointment .
although somewhat enjoyable during parts , it's so light it could float off the screen if it wasn't just images on a reel .
there's no thought , no development , no plot , just a series of manic edits and quirky camera angles to make this film appeal to gen-xers .
although it's a great idea : update a period drama to the mtv generation : it's execution is awful , and would more likely bore than excite .
sloppy and occasionally off puttingly tasteless , it's hard to recommend plunkett & macleane as a movie , but easy to recommend it as a overlong music video .
give it a miss .