Blake Lively has come a long way since her Gossip Girl days, taking some big roles in movies these days and proving to be an excellent actress even outside the world of the Constance Billard School for Girls. And one of her movies, which came out a few years ago is actually crushing it on streaming right now. Check out how the actress and her boyfriends (plural) get caught up in a fight against the Mexican drug cartel. Savages is currently ranked #6 on Netflix in the United States.
Savages takes place in a simple time when marijuana wasn’t basically legal everywhere and, for many, it was still considered very much a black market product. The movie centers on a trio of folks living in somewhat unusual circumstances in Laguna Beach, California. There’s Taylor Kitsch as Chon, Aaron Taylor-Johnson as Ben, and Blake Lively Ophelia or “O”. These menage-a-drug lords are living the high life. They run a lucrative marijuana business that has all of their financial bases covered and their idyllic life does kind of seem like the American Dream. They are young, making good money, and living in one of the most beautiful places on Earth.
The one little catch in this scenario, though it’s nothing more than unconventional is that the three are basically also in a relationship with each other. It’s as open as open can be with the dating mechanisms operating in a very loose structure of “everything goes” in the house. There’s nothing untoward around this piece except that Blake Lively is essentially in a simultaneous relationship with both guys and everyone is pretty much cool with the arrangement.
The trouble for this trio comes when the Mexican cartel moves into town and wants to move into business with this group. At first they refuse which feels like always the wrong way to go when the cartel is involved. But alas, that’s what they choose to do and things quickly devolve from there. Blake Lively is kidnapped and used as leverage against the two bros and they have to go to work, vigilante-style, to free her, keep control of their business, and, in the end, love. Check out the trailer for Savages:
There are a lot of big names joining Blake Lively in this film. In addition to the aforementioned Kitsch and Taylor-Johnson, there’s Salma Hayek who is running this contingent of the Mexican drug cartel. Then there’s Benicio del Toro who is her right-hand man and henchman. And of course, we get John Travolta as a federal DEA agent.
And we made it this far before mentioning that Savages is directed by one Mr. Oliver Stone who also adapted the script from the Don Winslow novel of the same name. He had auditioned a lot of other top talents for the lead roles including Amber Heard and Olivia Wilide before finally going with Blake Lively. This film followed his sequel Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps and was before Snowden. While he avoids the conspiracy tip in this movie, there are higher levels of intrigue among the bigger players in the film.
Savages was solid, if unspectacular with critics. It’s sitting at 59 on Metacritic and 50% on Rotten Tomatoes. Most reviews trended in a similar direction for the film with a general theme surrounding a difference between the style and the actual story execution. From a visuals perspective, it seems like Oliver Stone got it right here with a cast that’s very easy on the eyes. The story does leave some to be desired in terms of overall realism and just the general sense of what the three two-bit drug dealers are up against. But from a stylized easy watch on streaming this is a good movie for that.
As for Blake Lively, her next movie will be The Husband’s Secret based on the novel by Liane Moriarty. The latter also penned Big Little Lies and in this latest movie once again a group of women will get caught in an interesting web. No other major casting decisions have yet been made for that film. In the meantime, check out Blake Lively in Savages which definitely fits the bill as a good streaming watch.