Category Archives: action

Venom – Ruben Fleischer (2018)

“Venom” is a not too strong Marvel film.

Eddie Brock is a formerly hip reporter who gets inhabited by an alien parasite called Venom. Venom speaks and understands English perfectly. While he is initially a hostile host, the two form an unlikely alliance.

“Venom” has too much childish humour, fairly silly action and in spite of descent CGI the film remains a poor Marvel action film.

The Bourne Supremacy – Paul Greengrass (2004)

The second of the Bourne trilogy takes up pretty much where the first film ended.

Bourne is still trying to find out who he was before his incident and his former employees are still looking to shoot him. But for the second film another problem occurs for Bourne: the Russians who also want him dead.

After hiding for two years, Bourne is discovered and forced to flee. Apparently in these two years he started to remember things and he goes to places where he used to have missions. He is also framed for a killing he did not commit and thus we have a recepe for another action spectacle with car chasings, fist fights and shootouts. The first film is a little more interesting.

The Bourne Identity – Doug Liman (2002)

I bought a box with the three Bourne films. Damon is not really my actor and action not my genre, but they are rated well enough, the box was cheap (and I mixed them up with the Rippley films), so…

Damon is a secret agent who has lost his memory after a mission. While he is trying to find out his identity, his employers set out to kill him as soon as they find out that Bourne is not dead.

As expected, this is an action spectacle with fighting, shooting and car-chases. Amusing at best. The story unfolds nicely, which could be because the film is based on a book by Robert Ludlum.

Not really a high-flyer, but not boring.

Rise Of The Foot Soldier – Julian Gilbey (2007)

The violent life of Carlton Leach. As a youngster he was active as a football hooligan who liked to kick the shit out of people. Then he gets asked to be a bouncer for a club, a task he violently commits to. When he needs personnel, he gets his old mates. There are more clubs who need cleaning up and then the possibility arises to see to the security of drug deals. Of course then the step to violent crime is but a small one.

The film is full of brutal fighting, going over to torture and when the group gets a problem with the Turkish maffia, things really go out of hand.

The film makes quite a brutal watch. It is unimaginable what violence people are capable of. Of course his ‘work’ seeps into Leach’s private life as well.

xXx – Rob Cohen (2002)

What exactly made me opt for this film? Samuel L. Jackson perhaps? It probably will not have been Vin Diesel, because in my mind he only makes standard action movies. This is one of those…

Xander Cage (Diesel) is a stuntman who is popular on the internet. Agent Gibbons (Jackson) wants to recruit him to infiltrate in a criminal organisation. This leads to some quite ‘action for the sake of action’ scenes in which Cage is ‘tested’. Explosions, motorcycle stunts, yadiya.

The film does have a nice opener with a Rammstein show, then follows Cage’s internet stunt, his recruitment and then a Bond-like story with a ‘Bond girl’ follows, a bad guy with plans to blow up the world and our hero to stop that. Nothing really worth watching, but then again, not really boring either.

Crying Freeman – Christope Gans (1995)

I thought that I bought some hip action film as a ‘spare film’, but only when I put it on, I noticed that it was directed by Gans who made some more descent films.

The freeman from the title is a killer for the Chinese maffia. When a woman sees him working, she is supposed to be killed too, but the freeman has second thoughts.

Then we jump forward to a feud between Japanese and Chinese maffia and the freeman’s mythical reputation. The film being based on a comic gives it a somewhat ‘poetical vibe’.

What really adds to the atmosphere are the slow, stretched scenes with 1990’ies synth music, very moody. The scenes are often dark. There are some weaker scenes, but overall I found “Crying Freeman” unexpectedly moody with here and there a violent shootout.

Cobra – George P. Cosmatos (1986)

I do not really remember how this old Stalone ended up on my wishlist. This has never been my genre. Apparently I added two films of the director to the list, since I received another one (“Shadow Conspiracy” 1999). I do not immediately see the reason. Perhaps I mixed up his name with another one?

In a violent and dystopian society a violent gang kills people to prepare society for the future. Stalone is a cop of a violent division and of course he is sent out to fight the gang. In the proces he hooks up with the only witness alive, played by Brigit Nielsen. Yes, 1980’ies abound! There are more familiar faces, David “Sledgehammer” Rasche and Brian Thompson who plays the eerie shape-shifting hunter in the X-Files.
Incidentally Thompson is also a “hunter” in “Cobra”, the hunter in fact from the sample that Karjalan Sissit uses in “Pig Society”.

Anyway, of course you will get a load of violent action, some amusingly over-the-top. Stalone is the pretty bad boy with a small heart and society is almost as dark as in “Mad Max”.

Not bad, but still not really my genre.

King Arthur: Legend Of The Sword – Guy Ritchie (2017)

This way-too-Hollywood spectacle is very loosely based on the legends of King Arthur. The creators made a story in which the “mages” are in war with humans resulting in a CGI-explosion in the opening scenes. This makes a thin bridge towards Arthur who is a commoner raised in a brothel.

The bad guy in the story is Vortigern (a very nice part of Jude Law) who tries to dominate the world. There is an alternative take on how the sword got stuck in the stone and of course Arthur is the one to get it out in order to thwart Vortigern’s plans.

Like I said, way-too-Hollywood with obligatory and unsuccessful drama, tons of over-the-top action, made-up elements and a fairly thin story.

The film may not be boring, but it has little to do with the Arthurian legends and all the extra elements did not really make an interesting story either.

The 6th Day – Roger Spottiswoode (2000)

In the near future pets are cloned commercially. When you pet dies, you can get your “repet”. Even though it is forbidden, the company behind “repet” also clones humans and thus one day Adam Gibson (Arnold Schwarzenegger) comes home finding that he already is home.

For a large part of the film Schwarzenegger has to play the family man and he is not a good enough actor for such a part. When the cloning company sets out to kill either the clone or the original, the film evolves towards a genre that Schwarzenegger is more familiar with: action.

“The 6th Day” gives a few things to think about, but it is nothing more than a standard Hollywood action film.

Chappie – Neill Blomkamp (2015)

The description for “rebel robot” is more interesting than the film. In a crime-filled future Johannesburg the police uses police robots to fight the gangs that try to control the city. One of the creators of these robots uses one of them to experiment with artificial intelligence and hence “Chappie” is ‘born’.

What I thought would be an amusing action film is a bit of a childish film with cheap drama and a bit of action. The film raises a few questions about AI, but it is all too thin for my liking.