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I know a lot of critics did not like this movie and it almost made me decide to pass on it until I heard some good things from a few friends. So I decided to check it out as a fan of Will Smith in both his action and drama work. Overall I liked it. Smith played a man going through emotional pain and despair. Smith played this role well. I should know after watching a close family relative struggle with the death of his wife. However, Smith feels guilt over the deaths and decides to offer himself as a sacrifice to help others. This movie doesn't really give you an easy answer. It lets you struggle with the moral of his actions. Is he being selfish in desiring to seek death and hoping to help a few others. Or does he really want to live, but can't live with others who are in pain and takes his altruism to the extreme? For me I don't know, but I can take away from the film the spirit of the message which is that sacrifice does show love in its most pure form. Now I'm not advocating suicide, but sacrifice can come in many forms. Good movie. Good performances, good music, great acting, and a good message overall. I would buy it and watch it again.
This movie is one of my favorite plays transformed into a movie. Yes, Paccino is amazing as Shylock. That's a given. The themes this play and movie touch upon are vast and deep. But the movie is fun as well. Portia's process of finding a suitor and her playful helping and entrapment of Bassanio is both comical and scary (from a guys point of view). The comical romance of this story can be both overshadowed by the deep themes and in the movie Paccino's performance. Nevertheless, they are there to explore and why I have again visited this movie in Feb. 2010 and given it a review.