Saw Salt it last night. I've been binging on Inception-mania lately and had to prove I could diversify
Salt is very much a throwback to the 80's espionage Cold War thrillers - think No Way Out, which it resembles and functions almost as a continuation of that story line - crossed with the current incarnation of the spy movie: Jason Bourne.
Eveyln Salt, played by Angelina Jolie, had originally been Edward Salt, and was to be played by Tom Cruise before he was either booted from or quit the production, depending on your news source. I think the actor and gender change works much better giving us more sympathy and sense of ambiguity for the main character. (Would there have been any doubt Salt, as played by Cruise, was not
a good guy? I don't think so.) Here, Jolie walks a high-wire constantly playing with our perception of who Salt really is and what side she belongs to.
The whole 'trick' of the movie is leaving the audience unsure of exactly what allegiance Salt belongs to. The fact that it pretty much sustains that ambiguity for most of the movie is credit to both director Phillip Noyce, who knows his way around character driven action, and screenwriter, Kurt Wimmer, who specializes in this kind of preposterous action. (He previously has written The Recruit, Equilibrium, Thomas Crown Affair, and Ultraviolet. Oh. Well, they all can't be roses. )
The end reveal genuinely caught me off guard and works nicely. Liev Schreiber seems to have been born to play double-crossing office scum, and does it very well.
Summation: It's mindless summer cotton candy, but very well made mindless summer cotton candy.