CAST: Jason Statham, Tommy Lee Jones, Jessica Alba, Michelle Yeoh, Sam Hazeldine, Femi Elfuwoju Jr, Anteo Quintavale, John Cenatiempo
DIRECTION: Dennis Gansel
DURATION: 1 hour 40 minutes
There's no rest for the wicked, as the saying goes. But Arthur Bishop (Statham) is anything but wicked; a rebel with a cause, more likely. And Bishop's arch-nemesis Crain (Hazeldine) has taken his girlfriend Gina (Alba) hostage. Crain tells Bishop that he will execute Gina unless and until he carries out a bunch of 'hits' (read: murders) for him. Dirty deeds done dirt cheap. But in this case, for love. Bishop has to comply. As fate deals it, Crain finds out that he has made a double-handed deal with the Devil himself.
Move over, Jackie Chan. Head to the back of the class, Matt Damon's - now, honestly very yawn-inducing - Jason Bourne. Sylvester Stallone and Arnie, you are both legends and you both finally have a worthy successor. Pure action films, in this case revenge-action as a sub-genre, as this kind of movie is meant to be straightforward and to be digested by anyone whether they are ten years old or 50. Jason Statham is now the DUDE of unabashed, no-holds-barred action films. Despite the staid title like 'mechanic' and a plot line that is as simple as can be, Statham pulls punches - literally - like we haven't seen in any action film this year. Okay, to be fair, at least not yet.
Statham, over the course of the many years that he has been in action cinema, seems to have honed his art to a fine level. For even a seasoned critic or a cynic looking for points to poke about, there are none in the performance that he delivers when it comes to brute action. Count the bullet shots that he fires from his 9mm with a silencer attached; he changes magazines after the chamber clicks empty. So much for realism. The plot of this film, as mentioned earlier, is simple enough for a toddler to fathom. But action junkies will get their mainline fix with this one.
And does he find redemption with his held-hostage girlfriend (Alba looks awesome, by the way) at the end of it? Go see and find out. Kick-ass action delivered here. Recommended for action lovers.