The Beach

MPAA Rated – R
It’s 1:53 Long
A Review by:
The Dude on the Right

The Beach
Movie Stats & Links
Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tilda Swinton, Virginie Ledoyen, Robert Carlisle
MPAA Rated: R
Released By: 20th Century Fox
Kiddie Movie: Not at all.
Date Movie: I saw two couples leave in the middle – leave her at home.
Gratuitous Sex: Sex and nudity and I’m still only giving it 1 1/2 star.
Gratuitous Violence: People get shot and some shark wounds.
Action: Some chasing.
Laughs: The movie.
Memorable Scene: The shark wounds.
Memorable Quote: “We’re in dope heaven!”
Directed By: Danny Boyle

Because I’m usually pretty easy to please, if you put some quality violence, some nice gore, a hot lady or two (getting naked is a plus), and the potential for a good movie, well, everything can suck and I’ll still give it a decent rating. “The Beach” had all of that, but I just can’t get past the scene where Richard (Leonardo DiCaprio) goes nuts. It was at that point that I saw two couples leave the movie, and I wanted to also except I had to see where it would all end up. It ended up with a commercial for Macintosh.

I don’t know, ever since “Titanic” it seems like I’ve seen DiCaprio trying to get out of the teenage heart-throb persona that it gave him. There were the stories of his bar hopping in L.A., there was his role in “Celebrity,” and now there is “The Beach.” As Richard, he narrates his way into Bangkok, where he seems to intentionally over-emphasize the “kok” part when he says it, finding himself sick of home and looking for adventure. Shacking up in a bug-infested hotel, one room next to him holds the hot Francoise (Virginie Ledoyen) while the opposite room holds the psychotic Daffy (Robert Carlisle). While sharing a joint through the wall partition, Daffy tells Richard of this beautiful island paradise, with the coolest beach and the best pot. As Richard’s fate has it, the next day there is a map on his door to the island, Daffy went totally wacky, and Richard asks Francoise and her boyfriend if they want to try and find the island. They go along.

So, yea, they find the island paradise, half inhabited by pot-growing folk ready to kill anyone who invades their plantation, the other half inhabited by a commune of hippie-folk, seemingly self-sufficient until someone makes a run to the mainland when the necessities of home become more important than the beautiful beach. Well, Richard falls for Francoise (there’s a surprise – who wouldn’t?), she falls for him, they get naked in the lagoon, and all is well until a group of folks who Richard slipped a copy of the map to try to show up. Richard is sent to a twisted solitary confinement waiting for them to arrive so he can steal the map back, and in the meantime, well, goes insane.

I suspended my disbelief about the movie up until this point because it was a movie, but when Richard finds himself hallucinatingly traipsing through the jungle after the enemy, my suspension of reality turned to “when is this going to end?”

DiCaprio does a decent job as the thrill-seeking Richard, Ledoven is hot and gets naked, you’ve got a couple of gruesome shark bites, and some folks get gunned down. The movie had potential, but seemed to overdue it on the shock value instead of keeping a little bit of realism. My main case in point on this was Daffy’s suicide. The story was that Daffy slit his wrists, his guts, or maybe his neck. Fine, the dude killed himself, but the room, with blood everywhere, and I mean everywhere, looked like his body exploded rather than just a suicide. Maybe a hopped-up-on-drugs suicide can splatter blood all over a room, what do I know, but it just bothered me.

So, with that, I say wait for cable on this one, even with the blood, gore, sex, nudity, and potential for a good story. It just doesn’t go there. 1 ½ star out of 5.

That’s it for this one! I’m The Dude on the Right!! L8R!!!