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24 August 2014

The 51st State Review

There is a new drug in town and everyone wants a taste. The 51st State [aka Formula 51] (2001) is an action comedy film featuring Samuel L. Jackson as a chemist with big ideas about his newest designer drug. His newest creation promises to be 51 times greater than any of the current party drugs on the street and now he is looking for his payoff. After traveling to England, the American chemist is thrown into a world of violence and greed as everyone is looking for a slice of the action. Welcome to the drug underworld where the chemist is king!


Rating
7/10

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The film has a strong action packed plot which explores the world of drugs from a unique perspective. With violence, greed and corruption themes running throughout, it’s a film which will suit the needs of any action junkie. Being a strong action film doesn’t prevent it from having a comedic value however, it has an inherently funny situational set up which is fantastically amusing.

The character set up is pretty good with plenty of conflicting and contrasting personalities. The main two characters couldn’t be more different, the streetwise American chemist and the foul mouthed gangster from Liverpool. While the characters contrast completely, they also work together in a way which plays to the films strengths.

A few problems were apparent with the film. One of these was that it didn’t quite manage to balance its Action and Comedy themes well. It tended to flip between the two genres instead of mixing them together, this gave the impression that they kind of just flung together a few ideas and then applied a story to it. However a few scenes did manage to balance the two themes well, such as the part with the golf clubs and the car chases.

Overall the film is a good laugh and has an interesting story. While it had its issues, it still held its own as a solid piece of cinematography. The strong action themes often overpower the comedy values but it’s definitely still got a few, laugh out loud moments. We are giving the film a 7/10 and would highly recommend giving it a watch. Seen the film? Then why not let us know what you thought in the comments below!

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