What happens when you mix Grand Canyon, Magnolia, and 21 Grams? You get Crash, as written and directed by Paul Haggis, the man who wrote the Oscar-winning Million Dollar Baby.
This is an ensemble cast in the truest sense of the words. There are a ton of stars, but no one gets that much screen time. There's Sandra Bullock, the spoiled rich-bitch. There's Don Cheadle, the detective trying to deal with his criminal brother and crazy mother. There's Matt Dillon, the racist cop. Throw in Brendan Fraser, Thandie Newton, Ryan Phillippe, Ludacris, and even Tony Danza in a cameo, and you get one neat little movie.
The title deals with a car crash, but it's also how Don Cheadle describes the people of Los Angeles: they never get to know one another because no one ever "crashes" into you. Sure, the movie is a little heavy-handed, but it does make you think about racism – racism of all kinds, not just white against black.
I was impressed with Matt Dillon. Seems like this guy has been around forever, but he's only 41! He's made a nice transition from heart-throb to character actor, given the proper role – as in Crash as the racist police officer who is gets a chance at redemption.
And please do not confuse this version of Crash with the ridiculous Crash directed by David Cronenberg in 1996. Compared to that one, the current "crash" is one smooth ride.