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USA, UK, France
Crime, Drama, Thriller, Action
IMDB rating:
Baltasar Kormákur


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Mark Wahlberg as Chris Farraday
William Lucking as Bud Farraday
Amber Gaiennie as Danny's Bride
Jason Mitchell as Walter
Paul LeBlanc as CBP Official
Connor Hill as Michael
David O'Hara as Jim Church
Robert Wahlberg as John Bryce
Giovanni Ribisi as Tim Briggs
J.K. Simmons as Captain Camp
Ben Foster as Sebastian Abney
Kate Beckinsale as Kate Farraday
Kent Jude Bernard as Tommy Raymer
Diego Luna as Gonzalo
Lukas Haas as Danny Raymer
Contraband Storyline: Chris Faraday once smuggled illegal items or contraband into the country on freighters. He left that life behind, got married, has a family and went legit. But when his brother-in-law got involved with Briggs, a drug dealer and when he blew a deal, Briggs demands restitution which he can't deliver. So Chris offers to find a way to pay Briggs but then he threatens Chris' family if he doesn't deliver. So he gets on a freighter destined for Panama and he sets out to bring back some counterfeit currency. Briggs "goes to see" Chris' family. When Chris learns of this he asks his friend Sebastian to take care of them which he does. He tells Chris that it would be better to bring drugs instead of the cash.
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iPhone 320x136 px 236 Mb h264 301 Kbps mp4 Download
Far fetched getaways makes for Bond-like ending
This film is riddled with situations which would have far different outcomes in real life. There were many times when people giggled or laughed out loud in the theatre as the star pulled off stunts or escapes that would make James Bond choke on his martini. If the CBP and Panamanian police were this inept, smugglers wouldn't need submarines, they could use hot air balloons. That said, the movie does a good job of making you want to smack some people upside the head (both bad guys and good guys making bad choices). There are also some tense scenes involving kids that will unnerve some audience members, especially those who are parents. Bad guys just don't have any rules do they? In the end, the implausible movie wraps up sweeter than when the submarine rises up underneath Bond's adrift life raft in the middle of the ocean. Bourne would also be proud of the size of the bow-tie on Wahlberg's walkaway.
Like 'fast food' - good while your eating it, but questing 'why' after.
The Contraband preview made me sit up and take notice, the acting cast is great and the plot looked exciting (don't you just hate how they can turn our perception of a movie with a preview?).

I had my doubts within the first 10 minutes; Andy and his mate are running drugs on a ship their almost busted but manage to throw it all overboard and get off scott-free, until they have to explain it to the 'drug lord'. The cliché starts from here and more follow. But hey, so what? There are always new viewers with every generation, and they deserve a chance to see something that's been done before, with a new outlook. Contraband does fill a void, the locations are interesting, the main actors start well, and the movie keeps the viewers interest up till the end.

However, it's the small things that leave an experienced movie watcher empty and asking "why".

Things like; why would meet the drug lord in a dark secluded place? Why leave your family at home after having an altercation with the drug lord? These are scenes that most viewers know the what the reaction will be. Though most are willing to forgive and keep watching, the filming is done well. I think we're willing to forgive it because of the small twists, the acting and the hope something different will pop up soon (probably due to Mark Wahlberg and Giovanni Ribisi).

My biggest gripe with the movie is the way the film starts keeps dropping the IQ level of the required viewer. The over use of clichés, and the little things like using a mobile phone on a ship out on the ocean. They probably could have got away with this one if the first phone call started on the mobile, but it didn't, the first call was taken from the ships satellite phone.

I could go on, but I don't want to be a spoil sport. Watch the movie, it's a great example of packing way too much in. Like eating a super-sized hamburger meal in 30 minutes, when a 3 course meal over 2 hours was what you wanted.
I long for the day when movies like "Contraband" vanish from the face of the earth
Everybody has their own idiosyncratic tastes. That is something a great many people in this world, it seems, desperately need to learn. Because of your own, personal aesthetic, there are some types of movies that you hope never disappear and some you wish the filmmaking community would just give up on. I love Japanese monster movies, and I cannot wait for the day when movies like "Contraband" vanish from the face of the earth. Of course, that is just a fantasy: a world without tired, washed-out formula pictures. In reality, the world is destined to get more and more of these films because they are fiscally safe and, much to my dismay, most of the moviegoers seem to like them. Like I said, everybody is different.

It's not crime pictures that I'm tired of. On the contrary, I am always in the mood for a good mystery or neo-noir. It's the formulaic, depleted wintertime shell-outs like "Contraband" that I would rather not see again. It's the same politically correct, drugs-are-bad saga that's been brought onto the screen many times. You have a hero with a questionable past, a respectable present, and a dubious future. In this case, a former drug runner (Mark Wahlberg) now with a wife (Kate Beckinsale) and two children, and being forced to make a run to Panama in order to pay back a kingpin (Giovanni Ribisi) threatening to murder his family. There's also, of course, the protagonist's best friend (Ben Foster), whose true colors are not revealed until halfway through but were clearly visible a mile away.

I think what wore me out so quickly in "Contraband" was the overwritten screenplay and the unremarkable directing style. The former is a messy clutter of plot twists and would-be-suave dialogue that bubbled and bubbled until my ability to care just flew out the window. The movie's ride for success depends on whether the audience can care about Mark Wahlberg's protagonist. I did not, for all I saw was an actor stranded in a messy story. I did not believe in his character as a human being. I did not come to understand Miss Beckinsale as his wife, or his children for that matter, to care whether or not they were spared at the end.

The directing, however, is probably more terrifying than the screenplay. "Contraband" was directed by Baltasar Kormakur, an Icelandic filmmaker with an apparent desire to mimic Tony Scott. He copies all of those irritating bad habits: the herky-jerky camera movements, the quick zooms in and out where no zoom is necessary, the awkward misc en scenes, and the rapid editing so brisk that each shot usually lasts just a fraction of a second. It's really exhausting to look at. What is also bad is the cinematography by Barry Ackroyd. Last year, I was stunned by Tom Stern's dismal lighting work in "J. Edgar"; but Mr. Ackroyd's fair takes the cake. Every shot, regardless of whether it is day or night, is gloomy and drenched with ugly shadows. The defining shot: a standard moment where Mr. Wahlberg has a gun pointed to his head while he stands the side of a black truck. In the extreme close-up, the gun seems to disappear into the truck until the man holding it just happens to push it a little closer to Mr. Wahlberg's forehead. Even then, it's still just barely visible.

In addition to wanting to be surprised by one of these gritty crime pictures, I am looking forward to the day where Mark Wahlberg can put his talents to a real test. The actor had a somewhat rambunctious youth and has based almost all of his performances upon that point in his life. As far as I am concerned, the only big success so far was his performance in Martin Scorsese's "The Departed," where he outscored exceptional talents such as Matt Damon, Leonardo DiCaprio, Martin Sheen, and Jack Nicholson. His performance in "Contraband" is a lifeless one; he looks bored to death playing this part. Supporting performances range from dreadful to simply unremarkable. The sole exception is J.K. Simmons, playing a cantankerous ship captain with (gee, guess what?) a would-be shocking denouement involving drugs. It's not the character; it is Mr. Simmons' outstanding ability to manufacture a personae that the audience will buy into. This is a criminally underrated actor who seems resorted to finding his best world in television. There's nothing wrong with that, but I would like to see him tackle a good role for the big screen.

The third act of this picture defines the word 'predictable.' It's no spoiler by giving away that Mr. Wahlberg ultimately triumphs by outsmarting and outclassing everybody – and I mean, everybody – else and ultimately living happily ever after without another soul pursuing him. In every concerned filmmaker's heart, the goal would be to manufacture that character so that when he does win, the audience can pump their fists into the air and cheer him on. Unfortunately, the makers of "Contraband" had no apparent desire or interest in doing so; as a result, the denouement is utterly devoid of excitement. There's not much to get involved with here.
Loads of fun!
It's implausible, clichéd (I'm sick of that word), not the best script, not-always perfect acting etc. etc. etc. and etc.

Now that the obvious stuff is out of the way;

It's tonnes of fun!

The film was a bit 'too' by-the-numbers in the beginning I'll admit that but I got a "we're getting on really well and having a laugh making this" vibe from all of the actors which helped because there wasn't really any chemistry built between the characters so the fact that the actors themselves seemed to have it was a plus.

About halfway through and then all the way to the end, the film kicks into gear and is seriously entertaining.

Don't read the next two lines if you don't even like hints at what happens in films (it's not a spoiler but you might guess what I meant while watching the film):

**At one point...I thought Hollywood had finally broken the mould and done something the audience didn't want to see...but no**

I felt that what I mentioned above might have helped to make this unique from all the other "must save family by breaking the law" type films out there and give it some credibility (in a weird way..!)

But the fact that this film has Ben Foster in it is enough anyway.

Acting wise everyone does their usual stuff. Some is amazing and some is standard...Giovanni Ribisi is outstanding and the only one that I felt bothered to transform himself into a believable scumbag.

Everyone else was a little too "clean" looking and sounding.

Great film and definitely one to watch, just don't be expecting anything thought-provoking (obviously)

8/10 for sheer enjoyment factor...I may even watch it again.
Illicit goods
CONTRABAND is a wretched script elevated by some decent Scandi direction. The plot sees Marky Mark as an ex-smuggler who - who'd have guessed it? - gets pulled back in for one last job, after his brother in law loses a cargo that belonged to the wrong people. Soon he's got the old crew back together and they're off to Panama to pick up the goods, whilst his wife gets hassled by a thug from the same gang (which isn't entirely convincing as Kate Beckinsale looks like she could take Giovanni Ribisi in a fair fight anyday) and also by the ex-alcoholic friend he left behind to look after her. Smuggling is an interesting subject which is under-represented cinematically, although this film doesn't help because it's far more interested in heists and thuggery than in how the smuggling actually works. The aforementioned heist in Panama is the best part of the film, even if the plan makes no sense and leads to nearly everyone involved dying. The final outcome is never in doubt and the acting is pure formality but it rattles along, the location shooting is nice and the subject is just different enough to make this watchable.
Nothing new about the story of the movie. Actually I was expected more from Mark Wahlberg.. I couldn't even call this movie action movie, we didn't see so much action in the movie... in my opinion and that is only my opinion because maybe someone else like the movie but I didn't enjoy it and I think it is only deserve 5 out 10..

The movie is about one hour and 48 minutes and for one hour I found the movie is very boring and nothing happen. And the only funny thing in the movie is the last scene in the movie.. there is no logic at all in this scene.. When mark Wahlberg call this guy I couldn't remember his name to tell him that he know the truth and he will be behind him if something happen to his family and then he insist to kill her and Chris came in the last second and stop the cement machine and save her and take her to the hospital after we thought that she was died ... what is that ???

again that is my opinion. if you ask for my advise choose another movie or go and watch it and judge by yourself... Thanks
Not so good...
Possible spoiler alert

First, let me tear this movie down. This film was a traditional, mindless, action-driven, escapist film. This movie was laughably clichéd. None of the performances were believable. There was almost no original material, only regurgitated Hollywood gimmicks. The pacing of the film is lightning-fast, just fast enough to not care about the characters at all. The cinematography was terrible. It was as if the director of photography was a person that had never handled a camera before. I understand that they may be trying to capture a certain urgency, but there was too much unnecessary zooming and shaking. It came across as just another gimmick in this cliché-filled movie. To summarize, this movie is uncreative and unspecial. If you are a fan of movies that are different, special, inspiring, etc., don't go see this movie. I was dragged to this movie by my friends, as it was.

Now, the good parts. It was somewhat well produced; it had some good special effects (boats, helicopters, explosions, guns). It was "manly." It had some small moments of excitement, but they were underwritten by the predictability of the plot line. And finally, there was one steadicam tracking shot at the end that was a breath of fresh air within the crappy cinematography of this film.

All in all, this movie is not a movie for fans of great cinema. But if you are a film of Hollywood blockbusters, go for it. But I bet you can guess the ending after five minutes of watching.

Don't believe the reviewers, this action packed adventure thrilled and entertained the entire audience. Even got spotty applause which is a rarity except for the most exceptional films.

Great camera work gave exciting glimpses of the Panama Canal, the Canal Zone and the port of New Orleans.

Contraband is a perfect portrayal of the gritty life of crime, and the amoral people who live it. Several exciting twists and turns make the ending a surprise not even my genius plot detective wife could figure out beforehand.

Mark Wahlberg continues to give us one realistic performance after another. Leave the kids at home and go see this action packed thriller.
In the exclusively clichéd Contraband, ex-bad guy Mark Wahlberg plays Chris Farraday who helps his idiot brother-in-law out of a jam but gets himself and wifey into plenty himself.

Quite frankly, that's all I want to say about this mess of a movie. It was a gut wrenching experience to watch old burned out themes overlapping even older and tired themes repeatedly. Hell, they all-but start the movie in the standard crowded, obviously East-Coast bar where Chris professes the standard, retired "he ain't like that anymore" speech.

It didn't help the movie was filmed in the dark, for the most part, and the script all over the place. Throw in bad performances, ho-hum action segments and actors who just didn't care to be there.

This heist themed film is so far removed from entertainment that it should, in fact, be banned. It's light-years under Ocean's Eleven (pick one) and it's a chore to get to the inevitable, highly foreseen finale.

Seriously, there is barely a redeeming quality here and it should be skipped.
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