Posts Tagged ‘Hard Target 2’

American-Assassin-Poster-croppedI am always looking to spotlight new actors who either take a shot at an action film or are grinding their teeth in the genre a shot here on Ass Whoopin Wednesdays. That is definitely the case for Dylan O’Brien (The Maze Runner) who recently released the action thriller American Assassin into theaters nation and world wide. O’Brien plays Mitch Rapp, a normal guy whose life is about to change when terrorists attack a vacation resort that he is staying at with his lovely fiance (Charlotte Vega). This has absolutely rocked and destroyed his world so he does what he thinks is best and he decides to retaliate. The CIA finds this to be unbelievable so they capture him and set him with a former Navy Seal in Stan Hurley (Michael Keaton) to train. Their training will be put to the test when a a man simply known as Ghost (Taylor Kitsch)  is trying to buy up stolen plutonium. The film also stars Sanaa Lathan (Blade) as Irene Kennedy, David Suchet (A Perfect Murder) as Director Stansfield, Scott Adkins (Hard Target 2) as Victor, Joseph Long (Dracula Untold) as General Rostami, Shiva Negar (The Art Of More) as Annika, Mohammad Bakri (Private) as Ashani, Navid Negahban (Homeland) as Minister Behurz, and the film was directed by Michael Cuesta (Kill The Messenger). Before we get into the review of the film, let’s check out some stats:

American Assassin StatsAmerican-Assassin-00As far as the stats are concerned, he has about 16 total kills in the film and we find out about his origin little by little, but we don’t know a lot. We just know about his parents and the trouble he had with school. This next one is going to answer two questions right off the bat and that is that he does have a love interest and she is killed right off the bat. That is what motivates him to do what it is that he does. The big boss is defeated and it’s a pretty damn good fight by the way so check it out for yourself. Right away, I am going to tell you that if having Dylan O’Brien doesn’t motivate you enough to see this film then at least go see it for the brilliance of Michael Keaton who I think kind of steals the show. The man is simply on fire from the first shot that you see him all the way to the end of the film. Dylan does a pretty good job and it seems like he put in the work so if another film does happen, I’d go see it. There is plenty of action in the film to satisfy an action fan or at least some hand to hand combat as well as the typical CIA operative crap. I do question however if they really did film some scenes in Providence because the camera work makes me think that they didn’t. After all, most of the film was filmed in England. This is definitely one to check out and with that being said I am giving the film four fists out of five for a final grade.

 

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jack-reacher-2If you noticed in the last couple of weeks, we have been doing a new segment called Tuesday Night Fights which we have listed under Ass Whoopin Wednesdays. Witht hat being said, we haven’t forgotten about the actual Ass Whoopin Wednesdays, we have just been waiting for the right film to come along. For this week’s edition of Ass Whoopin Wednesdays, we are watching Jack Reacher: Never Go Back. In this film, we see Jack Reacher (Tom Cruise) return to DC to meet a Major Turner (Cobie Smulders) to take her out on a date, but there is a problem. She has been arrested for treason and he is being charged with murdering her lawyer and he found out that he is possibly a dad. So, he breaks her out of jail to try and get to the bottom of the problem before they are both toast, but this goes deeper than they expected. The film also stars Aldis Hodge (Straight Outta Compton) as Espin, Danika Yarosh (Shameless) as Sam, Patrick Heusinger (Black Swan) as The Hunter, Holt McCallany (Fight Club) as Col. Morgan, Robert Knepper (Hard Target 2) as General Harkness, Madalyn Horcher (Gracepoint) as Sgt. Leach, and the film was directed by Edward Zwick (Legends Of The Fall). Before we get into the review of the film, let’s check out some stats:

jack-reacher-2-stats

jack-reacher-2-never-go-back-movieAs far as the stats are concerned, Jack Reacher has about 18 kills/KO’s in the film and if you want to know his origin story then rent the first film. He kind of has a love interest because his whole reasoning for going to DC in the first place was to take Major Turner out on a date. As far as the love interest, family, or friend getting hurt is concerned, they are fugitives on the run who are constantly shot at and at one point the Hunter tries to kidnap what could be his daughter. So, I think it’s safe to say that question gets a yes to it. The big boss is defeated, but not in a way you would think so watch it to find out for yourself. I loved the first Jack Reacher film and I definitely liked this one, but it could have been a little bit better. There were some things in the film that I just felt were a little rushed to be honest, but overall it has all the action and problem solving you could want from the film. I wasn’t a huge fan of Aldis Hodge’s character for most of the film cause it was kind of cheesy, but you’ll like him in the end. The fight scenes Cruise had were pretty good as well and you got to love the Hunter who is the ultimate match for him throughout the whole film. I feel like their fight scene in the end could have been more of a fight then it was, but I’ll allow it. I am going to give the film an B+ for a final grade.

hard-target-2When I was a kid growing up, I was a huge fan of Jean Claude Van Damme and all of his films. I have been becoming a huge fan of Scott Adkins (Ninja: Shadow Of A Tear) as of late so when I saw that he was starring in Hard Target 2 which is the sequel to Van Damme’s film, I decided to watch it for Ass Whoopin Wednesdays. Wes Baylor (Adkins) is one of the best in Mixed Martial Arts, but when he kills his best friend in the ring during a match, he can’t handle the guilt so he quits. After disappearing and taking underground fights in Thailand, he is contacted by a business man offering him a big payday. There’s only one catch, he is to be hunted by a group of rich hunters. If he can make it to the border he lives, but if he doesn’t he dies. The film also stars Robert Knepper (Hitman) as Aldrich, Rhona Mitra (The Number 23) as Sofia, Temuera Morrison (Star Wars: Episode III-Revenge Of The Sith) as Madden, Ann Truong (Hunters) as Tha, Adam Saunders (Blue Water High) as Esparto, Peter Hardy (Chopper) as Jacob Zimling, Sean Keenan (Strangerland) as Tobias Zimling, and the film was directed by Roel Reiné (Death Race 2). Before we check out the review of the film, let’s take a look at the stats:

hard-target-2-stats

hard-target-2-1-800x416The stats for this film were straightforward and sometimes a little tricky with certain questions. In the film Scott has about 26 kills/knockouts and I put an no next to origin story because we don’t know much about him other than he killed his best friend in a match. I wasn’t sure what to put for an answer as far as love interest was concerned because we don’t really know if he becomes a thing with Tha. As far as the next question s concerned, he did kill his best friend and Tha is also under attack as well. The big boss is defeated, but as always you’ll have to watch for yourself to find out how. I am really starting to become a big fan of Scott Adkins (I review Ninja: Shadow Of A Tear before) and he’s been in some films that I loved like The Expendables 2, etc. I’m not positive if I’ve seen the original Hard Target, but this wasn’t a bad film on it’s own. Sure, it’s basically a martial arts version of The Most Dangerous Game, but that’s what Hollywood and everyone else does. They rehash old ideas and they try to disguise them as fresh new ideas.The martial arts action in the film is pretty sick and I love all of the fight scenes with Adkins as a fighter before he joins the hunt. Those were some pretty sick fight scenes in the film for sure. You have to love the scenic shots of Thailand both in the city and in the jungle that are provided to you in the film including the closing credits. It wasn’t a bad action movie and of course you know what you’re getting with them. I am going to give the film 3.7 fists out of five for a final grade.