I have been waiting for this movie for ages, as you can see the movie was released in 2005 but I have only just picked it up from the local video store.
High hopes …
I did have high hopes for this movie but I should have known that it was not as good as it sounds due to the fact that it did not have a theater release in the US (I don’t know how it did in the UK). All the elements are there, Jason Statham back with Guy Richie directing and written by Guy Richie and Luc Besson.
On top of that you have an evil Ray Liotta playing the boss, Terence Maynard paying his heavy, Vincent Pastore and André Benjamin playing a couple of shady dudes who give Jason a run for his money (literally).
This seems to be setup to be a humdinger of a movie but it has issues.
What I liked …
I liked the characters and the violence, the world they created for the characters to live in is larger than life, everyone has a quirk that makes them stand out. As I said, the violence, any Guy Richie movie is splatter (again, literally) with people getting their just deserts, this is no exception, each death is beautifully choreographed but not overdone.
The plot …
It started out as standard fare, Jason Statham does time for Ray Liotta and he wants to get even, that seems simple enough, well things get complicated with the arrival of Vincent Pastore and André Benjamin who have something over Jason that makes him do whatever they want.
What is wrong with it then …
Well the problem is that the intricacies of the plot are too subtle especially for a Guy Richie movie. Yes, it is interesting, though provoking but I don’t want that from this type of movie, I want colourful characters beating the crap out of each other. I don’t want a tortured soul (souls in this case with Ray Liotta being a nutbag as well), I can get that sort of thing listening to Dr. Phil.
The best scene in the movie …
This was the scene when the main character played by Jason Statham is in a lift and he is fighting his alter ego, the scene cuts between him (all quite and cerebral) and his other side going mental, shouting, hitting the walls of the lift and generally being a nutbag (I like that word).
The other best scene in the movie was the montage of death by the hard nosed hit man who gets a conscience when the bad guys are about to kill a child (bad bad people). He goes through about 10 heavies with grace and flair, he gets it in the end but it is an honorable end to his life of misdeeds.
Who was that ?
Francesca Annis makes an appearance in the movie, she has not aged well, I didn’t recognise her at all and only found out she was in it when I read the cast list on the DVD cover. How the mighty have fallen.
Jason, be careful …
Jason Statham is a great action star, Trainsporter, Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Snatch, Cellular; all great movies, good action and interesting stories. Then he did Crank and In the Name of the King and this one, not good choices in my opinion. I will still go and see him in his movies but he better be careful that he picks better movies or people will start to walk.
Bottom line …
I sort of liked it mainly for the characters; I want to call out André Benjamin he is great in this movie, understated but powerful, a pleasure to watch. The plot leaves something to be desired but the violence makes up for it. The main problem is that I think that it was trying to be too clever.
Eggbox Rating: 5/10
|Where seen:||DVD at home|