Paparazzo’s are the scum of the Earth it seems. They pray on the lives of celebrities and will do whatever it takes to get the picture that will help pay off their rent. But what if the celebrity that they target decides to fight back? This is the hook of Paparazzi and it is a good one. It is a strong basis for a revenge thriller and thanks to some good performances; it is a fun and enjoyable action thriller.
The main aspect that I love is the story. Imagine if a celebrity did retaliate in the form of The Punisher. It’s some good stuff and it immediately makes the story a bit more memorable. Paparazzo’s are already villainous so it’s not hard to hate the paparazzo’s in this film either. The sympathy is already there and the drive is there as well. Cole Hauser plays our lead Bo and he’s a likable guy. A country man who shot up to fame quickly too fast and swarmed by some of the scummiest men possible. Speaking of which, Tom Sizemore is perfect as the sleaze ball paparazzi. You can tell he thrives on others’ suffering and he’s damn good at it. You also have Kevin Gage, some random European dude, and Daniel Baldwin to round out the scum wheel. They are all equally hateable. The revenge segment is strong with some nice tension thrown in throughout the movie. Dennis Farina pops up as the detective and he’s always good.
The main fault is that it didn’t go where I wanted it to in terms of violence. This could have easily been an R and have been much more impactful. I just felt it needed that extra push. The ending is sort of a letdown as you don’t see definite closure to the story and the satisfaction you want out of it. It’s also a revenge story by the numbers so it’s predictable to a tee. I also found the cameos they inserted in here to be annoying. Why have Chris Rock show up as the pizza man? It felt forced and out of place for such a serious subject.
Plot (8/10): It’s a strong story and a great backdrop for a revenge film. It just needed a bit more to it. It felt held back although there is plenty of sleaze to be found here.
Acting (7/10): Sizemore is the highlight just for how despicable he is. Hauser was a likable lead. Farina is always fun to watch.
Action (6/10): More thriller than outright action, but the cat and mouse game was done well.
Direction (6/10): It flies by quickly. It has an interesting look to it.
Eye Candy (8/10): Robin Tunney is an underrated actress in terms of looks.
Overall, it is a decent revenge thriller with a strong story and good performances if a bit underwhelming in its delivery.