Issues of race and gender cause a group of strangers in Los Angeles to physically and emotionally collide in this drama from director and screenwriter Paul Haggis. Graham (Don Cheadle) is a police detective whose brother is a street criminal, and it hurts him to know his mother cares more about his ne'er-do-well brother than him. Graham's partner is Ria (Jennifer Esposito), who is also his girlfriend, though she has begun to bristle at his emotional distance, as well as his occasional insensitivity over the fact he's African-American and she's Hispanic. Rick (Brendan Fraser) is an L.A. district attorney whose wife, Jean (Sandra Bullock), makes little secret of her fear and hatred of people unlike herself. Jean's worst imaginings about people of color are confirmed when her SUV is carjacked by two African-American men -- Anthony (Chris Bridges, aka Ludacris), who dislikes white people as much as Jean hates blacks, and Peter (Larenz Tate), who is more open minded. Cameron (Terrence Howard) is a well-to-do African-American television producer with a beautiful wife, Christine (Thandie Newton). While coming home from a party, Cameron and Christine are pulled over by Officer Ryan (Matt Dillon), who subjects them to a humiliating interrogation (and her to an inappropriate search) while his new partner, Officer Hansen (Ryan Phillippe), looks on. Daniel (Michael Pena) is a hard-working locksmith and dedicated father who discovers that his looks don't lead many of his customers to trust him. And Farhad (Shaun Toub) is a Middle Eastern shopkeeper who is so constantly threatened in the wake of the 9/11 attacks that he decided he needs a gun to defend his family. Crash was the first directorial project for award-winning television and film writer Haggis.~Mark Deming
Director's cut widescreen feature
DVD introduction by director Paul Haggis
Feature commentary with Paul Haggis, Don Cheadle and Bobby Moresco
6.1 DTS-ES, 5.1 Dolby Digital Surround EX, 5.1 Dolby Digital and 2.0 Dolby Digital
English and Spanish subtitles
English closed captions
Deleted scenes with director commentary
"Behind the Metal and Glass" Making of Crash
On Paul Haggis - featurette
"L.A. - The Other Main Character" featurette
Bird York "In the Deep" music video
Don CheadleGraham Waters
Matt DillonJack Ryan
Terrence HowardCameron Thayer
Thandie NewtonChristine Thayer
Ryan PhillippeOfficer Tom Hanson
Beverly ToddGraham's Mother
Keith DavidLt. Dixon
Sean CoryMotorcycle Cop
Billy GalloOfficer Hill
Art ChudabalaKen Ho
Mark R. HarrisProducer
Paul HaggisScreen Story
J. Michael MuroCinematographer
Kathleen "Bird" YorkSongwriter
Mark IshamComposer (Music Score)
Laurence BennettProduction Designer
Andy ReimerExecutive Producer
Jan KörbelinExecutive Producer
Marina GrasicExecutive Producer
Tom NunanExecutive Producer
Richard van DykeSound/Sound Designer
Dana W. GonzalesSecond Unit Camera
Sandy GendlerSupervising Sound Editor
Ensemble Film,Message Movie,Urban Drama,Social Problem Film
Crash unfairly received the Best Picture Academy Award in 2005. In my opinion, it was actually the weakest of the films that were nominated, but the greatest injustice was the defeat of Ang Lee's controversial cowboy forbidden love story "Brokeback Mountain". Crash's win seems like an excuse to avoid giving the Oscar to the movie about the cowboy love story by instead giving it to the film about racism. It's just a cop-out in my view.
In any case, Crash still has some things going for it, and those things that work in the film work very well. Paul Haggis is a very gifted director, and his work here is quite noteworthy. The film looks great, and there is a gritty yet lyrical quality to the look of it.
The acting is fantastic. The cast is about as A-List as an ensemble piece like this can get. Their participation (from Don Cheadle to Brendan Fraser) made the msking of this film possible, and it still took about two years to get made. It must be noted that this was a passion project for Haggis, which is obvious when one is viewing the film. I will not mention the acting, which is uniformly brilliant, save for one exception. The actor who gathered the most praise for this film is Matt Dillon, who plays a racist white cop. His father is struggling with urinary infections, and thus Dillon's character is shown both sympathetically in his struggles to help his father cope and negatively when he harrasses Terence Howard and Thandie Newton after pulling them over, and even molests Newton. The most incredulous part of the plot comes when less than two days after Dillon molested Newton, he must rescue her from her overturned vehicle before the leaking gas catches fire and blows up the car with her in it. It's a very powerful scene, but also somewhat ridiculous in its coincidence.
The connections that are developped between all of the characters in the film take away some of its credibility storywise. However, the acting and direction are so good it's hard not to forgive these issues. Crash is a worthy film, though it tends to be overrated. However, since most people tend to really like it, you probably will too.
I would recommend this to a friend
Rated 5 out of 5 stars
love this movie!!
One of my favs! The acting was superb and so glad the director won an award for this. No other movie that the characters all cross paths have been this good.