Whole Lotta Sole Review
By David Kempler
Not a Whole Lotta Soul
Brendan Fraser has always been an enigma as an actor. He has done some good work, specifically in "Gods and Monsters" and "School Ties", a film that was a kind of coming-out party for Matt Damon, Ben Affleck, and Chris O'Donnell. Fraser starred, but his career has not ascended in the manner of Damon and Affleck. This is not to say that Fraser has failed. On the contrary he has done very well for himself, but has chosen the path of low-brow action/comedy.
Fraser's latest is directed by Terry George ("Hotel Rwanda
"), who has turned to comedy this time around. Shot in George's hometown of Belfast, Northern Ireland, "Whole Lotta Sole" has a legitimate cast of actors, some funny and dramatic scenes, but they are littered between a bunch of weaker ones.
Joe Maguire (Fraser) is an American hiding out, running an antique store owned by his cousin. Jimbo (Martin McCann) is often spotted by Joe around the store, but he's not entirely sure why. Turns out that Jimbo owes a lot of money to Mad Dog Flynn (David O'Hara) a local Mafioso type. Flynn is unable to deliver a child to his lady friend. His suggestion to Jimbo offers him a way to clear his debt. All Jimbo has to do is give up his own infant son to Flynn, so that Mad Dog's girl can have a kid of her own. As stupid as that sounds, this is the main plot of "Whole Lotta Sole".
Other subplots are littered throughout, as well, all of them placed around as haphazardly as if they had been picked out of a hat. Every once in a while you can't help wondering aloud how all of this is supposed to mesh together until you realize that it doesn't. I'm still waiting for Fraser to go to the next level. Looks like it might be a very long wait.