Foremost reason why people are interested in this movie and maybe even excited about it is because it stars Jean-Claude Van Damme as the movie its villain. Yes, I know he was the main villain in "The Expendables 2", that came out just over a year ago but that movie was more of an ensemble piece. In this one he has to carry the movie mostly by himself. Does he manage to do it well? Well, he certainly does a decent and fun enough job but the movie itself still remains a very standard and mediocre one.

It's a movie that clearly uses the "Cliffhanger" and "Broken Arrow" template. A couple of bad guys 'loose' something in the middle of a natural park, so a couple of other bad guys go look for it, while some locals are the only ones around to stop them. It really isn't anything too original, which also means that it's a pretty predictable movie to watch. But then again, so are most genre movies of course.

And really, compared to most other genre movies, made with a similar budget, this movie really isn't all that bad. It at least manages to bring some entertainment and it really is a fun little movie to watch, from start to finish. And yes, this mostly is due to Jean-Claude Van Damme, who obviously had lots of fun playing the villain. Sure, it's a very over-the-top villain but at the same time that's also what makes him so good and entertaining to watch. From the moment he walks onto the screen, you know you shouldn't be taking things too seriously and things are going to be silly and over-the-top but definitely fun as well.

However one complaint though regarding Jean-Claude Van Damme as the movie its main villain, doesn't have anything to do with Jean-Claude Van Damme himself but with the fact that there isn't a strong name and recognizable face starring opposite him. When you have someone such Jean-Claude Van Damme as your main villain, you should also have someone of the same name and stature starring opposite him in my opinion. No offense to Tom Everett Scott but he just isn't a face or name a whole lot of people know and will recognize.

Thing I liked about the movie though was how the Tom Everett Scott character ended up teaming up with the Orlando Jones character. Normally the Orlando Jones role gets specifically written for- and given to a female, who also becomes the love interest for the main hero but this movie decides to do something different and more original instead. Definitely one of the only true original things about this movie as well, even though it really isn't anything too big or important. Just something I thought was pretty creative and different from what we normally get to see in these type of movies. Besides, I also really liked Orlando Jones in this movie. Don't think I had ever seen him in an action flick before but he manages very well. And no, he's not the comic relief of the movie. It's a completely serious and very straight role by Jones.

The action isn't anything too big or spectacular but at least it's good and fun to watch all. Jean-Claude Van Damme is definitely still a convincing action-star, despite his age. The movie mostly consists out of fire fights and some hand-to-hand combat scenes, of which some are involving the Van Damme character.

Maybe it's true more was to be expected of a movie for which director Peter Hyams and Jean-Claude Van Damme teamed up again, 18 years after "Sudden Death", which arguably is one of the better Van Damme movies but that doesn't mean that this movie is a bad or disappointing one as well. It actually is one of the better and more entertaining low budget action flicks I have seen in a while, starring a star from the 'old action days'.


Watch trailer

About Frank Veenstra

Watches movies...writes about them...and that's it for now.
Newer Post
Older Post

No comments:

Post a Comment