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Christmas in March?
Natalie Maxwell
Staff Writer

From The Gator Times,
March 15 - March 22, 2000

What is this world coming to? Ben Affleck has made a movie that does not star Matt Damon and is actually worth seeing.

In Reindeer Games, Affleck plays a man who has just been released from prison. He spends his first days as a free man with a prison pen-pal, played by Charlize Theron. Her brother, played by Gary Sinise, and his accomplices arrive unexpectedly and force Affleck to help them plan a Christmas Eve robbery. Affleck begins to question Theron's role and whether her part in the whole catastrophe is as innocent as she makes it out to be.

All of this is made perfectly clear in the preview for Reindeer Games, which does not do the movie justice. Maybe I am the only person confused about the purpose of movie previews. I thought they were supposed to make you want to see a movie upon its theatrical release.

This roller coaster ride of a movie is full of unexpected twists and turns that the preview does not even allude to. For example, the movie starts off with a dead man dressed in a Santa Claus suit, lying facedown in the snow.

The preview misleads you to believe that Theron is the pen pal of Affleck. In actuality she is his friend's pen pal. His friend, who was scheduled to be released the same day as Affleck, gets stabbed during a prison brawl in the cafeteria.

All Affleck wants when he is released from prison is to make it home for Christmas and to get some hot chocolate and a piece of pecan pie. However, he sees Theron standing outside of the prison waiting for his friend and decides to assume the man's identity. That's when his problems begin.

The only problem I really had with this movie was that within the first fifteen minutes of the film, I was blinded by Affleck's glow-in-the-dark behind. Other than that, I found the movie to be full of action. With its surprise-ending, this is one of those movies that you'll want to watch again to make sure that you really got it.

Last updated
March 15, 2001
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