Film Scouts Reviews

"Held Up"

by Thom Bennett

Starring: Jamie Foxx , Nia Long , Ian Black , Grant Bolton , Jake Busey .
Directed by Steve Rash .
Produced by Stokely Chaffin and Neal H. Moritz .
Written by Jeff Eastin
Distributed by Trimark Pictures

Hey, WB! Here's the pitch - "Dog Day Afternoon"… the sitcom?

Jamie Foxx, star of the aptly titled television program "The Jamie Fox Show", stars as Mike - a guy who, to say the least, is having one hell of a bad day. He has had a tiff with his fiancée (Nia Long) over spending their nest egg on a car and she has left both he and his car in the middle of nowhere at a dustbowl convenience store where his beloved car gets stolen. As if that isn't enough, he manages to get caught up in a botched holdup (hence "Held Up") and taken hostage along with the rest of the store's occupants.

And it only goes down hill from there - mostly for the audience. In this none too clever rehash of the hostage drama "Dog Day Afternoon" the viewer is treated (or rather subjected) to a parade of bad one liners, cliché driven characters and a plot that unfolds with such a muddled pace that it is almost painful waiting for something to happen.

The sophomoric grasps at humor attempt to play on the tired stereotypes of the principals involved - African Americans, Mexicans, bumbling police and "Rednecks" to name but a few. These are all jokes we have heard hundreds of times before and are hardly enough to carry a feature film. While Jamie Foxx (who did a nice turn in Oliver Stone's "Any Given Sunday") is a charismatic and generally very funny guy, he is left for dead here to flail amid a paper thin plot and material that never quite rises to the occasion.

When a film, particularly a comedy, is reliant on a single premise or situation, either the characters or dialogue must be at a level where they generate interest and keep things moving for the viewer. This, unfortunately, is not the case here. All said, "Held Up" is little more than a silly skit gone awry, a disappointing vehicle for Foxx and an hour and a half long hostage ordeal for anyone in the audience.

Back to Held Up

Back to the Press Room

Look for Search Tips

Copyright 1994-2008 Film Scouts LLC
Created, produced, and published by Film Scouts LLC
Film Scouts® is a registered trademark of Film Scouts LLC
All rights reserved.

Suggestions? Comments? Fill out our Feedback Form.