2001 - PG - 93 Mins.
|Director: Eric Hannah
|Producer: Cindy Bond
|Written By: Eric Hannah
|Starring: A.J. Buckley, Dante Basco, Derek Hamilton, Ryan Browning, Cassidy Rae
|Review by: Joe Rickey
Four friends - consisting of stock film characters: the jock, the eccentric, the ladies’ man, and, of course, cinema’s definition of an everyman - have just graduated from college, a period in their respective lives they are relieved to have completed. As a way to celebrate, they, along with the female cousin of the eccentric one, decide to take a road trip to Washington State, stopping often along the way for some surfing, biking, and other “extreme” sports activities.
If this film is “extreme”, then golf is a sport for active people. To put it another way, ‘Extreme Days’ is about as exciting an extreme sports film as watching endless slides of your grandma’s trip to the International Stamp Collectors Expo. The film finds a way to film the various stunts in a bland fashion at times and from camera angles that do all they can to obscure what is occurring on-screen. Not only that, but the film concentrates so much on the stunts that the film devolves into what seems like an endless stream of extreme sports highlights not unlike you would find on ESPN 2, complete with a generic rock soundtrack pulsating in the background. Director Eric Hannah gives the scenes no rhythm, no sense of continuity, that the scenes end up as a jumbled mess of inconsistencies.
It gets worse though when the film stops the stunts and gives what can only be termed a feeble attempt at dramatic resonance. The characters each go through a period during the trip that leads to some sort of personal revelation, all of which comes across as ham-fisted and otherwise unrealistic. Based on all the time the friends spend biking and other such things it is wholly unlikely that they would have time for a conversation, much less time to discover something within themselves that changes their view on the world.
The performances of the actors don’t help matters either. Dante Basco, Ryan Browning, A.J. Buckley, Derek Hamilton, and Cassidy Rae each give incessantly bland and ineffectual performances. They never bother to show much in the way of emotion much of the time and when they each have their self-discovery scene and are required to do so, one wishes that they would go back to a state of bland emotionless behavior. It becomes increasingly obvious that they were chosen for their looks over their talent, or lack thereof.
In the end, ‘Extreme Days’ is one pointless exercise in tedium. The filmmaker is obviously clueless when it comes to composing anything resembling a coherent motion picture and the small cast of characters so one note and not helped in the least by equally apathetic performances by the actors playing them. What a mess!