Tired of those patriotic American war movies yet? Well I guess I wasn't, because I went back and saw this. It's the typical set up. You've probably seen the same thing earlier in Deerhunter, Bullet in the Head, etc. A chopper crashes, a bunch of Americans are imprisoned (though the nationalities do vary in those other movies), tortured, treated badly, shot up, etc. Then they escape, return and blow the place to bits. In this movie it's mostly Chuck Norris that does all of those things. Though he doesn't play a lead role at the start of the movie, he gains it later on when he really takes control, and through his silence, patience and wit we learn that he's nobody you want to mess with.
Are the explosions made partially of fireworks? Does each punch stay raised in the air for a few seconds and force the punch-taker to either bend over and wince in pain or roll on the floor, wincing in pain? Do you always know what's going to happen when you hear the enemies growl or see that hate burning in Chuck Norris eyes? Does the recorded video sometimes darken unnecessarily due to bad lightning and equipment when filming? The answer to all of those things is yes, but still they don't necessarily mean bad things for the movie. It's not the modern-day Hollywood film; it has an ounce of grindhouse in it, it's like the first Sniper movie before they blew it to hell. It has shooting, brawling, drama, tension, people catching a bullet through their brains in close range, people getting shot up with opium and dying when they thought they were just being cured of their malaria, people being burned alive, etcetc. When I say people it's not really people, it's just one person in each scenario, but it is a pretty brutal movie at times.
The torture may not look brutal, the cages may seem easy to escape from, but there's still something there that makes you tense up or frown or think 'this shit is serious' or... hell, I don't know. It's a tough movie, you get a karate fight right at the end, and I can understand why Chuck Norris has such a rep for being a badass. Need to watch more of the movies he's been in, so far it's been way to few! This one gets a...
rated 3/5: not bad