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It's nothing unusual and nothing to be ashamed of but it's still kind of sad to see Simon West do these type of low-budget action-flicks nowadays. I mean, he used to be a pretty decent and promising genre director back in the days, with movies such as "Con Air", "The Mechanic" and "The Expendables 2" behind his name. Not great movies but decent- and above all things, well made ones, with some good action and high entertainment level to them. How different from this movie.

No, it most certainly isn't a terrible movie to watch but it remains nothing more but a very bland and formulaic one nevertheless. And sure, while some of this has to do with budget restraints but there also is no denying the fact that the story has far too little to offer, in terms of originality and spectacle.

"Call of Duty" the movie, could be a way to describe this movie. Sounds awesome and while I sincerely believe that this movie got influenced by the popular gaming franchise but only an influence in story-type and approach, not necessarily in terms of quality and engrossment as well.

It's being a tad bit too simplistic with its story and twists, that never really come as a surprise. It's a huge problem that the movie is lacking any form of true originality. It does not only make the movie predictable but also somewhat tiresome. Things only get spiced up occasionally by some decent action, while the budget keeps it from ever turning into anything truly spectacular.

Guess it's still true that the action is being the best aspect about this movie. It's very obvious all throughout that Simon West is an experienced action director, especially when it comes down to the car chases in this movie. You'll definitely wake up again during those sequences, only to drift off again during all of the movie its other moments.

Things definitely could have spiced up by having a better and more likable main character in it. Dominic Cooper is just a bit uncharismatic to play the leading 'action-hero' in this. It's weird how this movie has plenty of great and well known actors in it but all of them are either being typecast of miscast. It's pretty weird for instance how the Danish born Connie Nielsen is playing a very British character in this. It never really feels or sounds right, while Nielsen herself remains a great actress. Some actors are terribly underused as well. What for instance was the point of having Derek Jacobi in this? Thomas Kretschmann as the main villain feels like a huge waste as well. Again, a perfectly fine actor, who however is given very little to work with.

It's still somewhat good to see how this movie is trying to take a modern approach to all of its terrorism themes but at the same time it's being far from engaging or entertaining to watch all. It only entertains- and grabs your attention at parts but as a whole the movie falls flat, due to its lack of real originality, spectacle, surprises and engaging enough characters.

5/10

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About Frank Veenstra

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