Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Review: Bullet to the Head

World of Blackout Catch-up Review

Bullet To The Head Poster

Bullet To The Head
Cert: 18 / 91 mins / Dir. Walter Hill

I didn't think there'd be a time when Schwarzenegger and Stallone had separate movies released within a week of each other, and my local mutliplex showed neither of them. Ah, well. I finally caught Arnie's flick on DVD, and now I've got the pair.

There's plenty to love and loathe in Bullet To The Head; a New Orleans setting knocks on to some gorgeous bluesy soundtracking, and there's a lot of natty gunplay with headshots aplenty. Then the movie's let down by some intermittently awful scripting and acting, and a bickering relationship between the protagonists consisting mainly of casual racism. I can't work out what's worse - Stallone's narration-voiceover script, or his delivery of it. Outside of the mumbling mainman, the plot's not as clever as it'd maybe like to think it is, and any dead air in the script is filled with audience-friendly exposition (ie: news reporters explaining shootouts in exactly the way they never do on the news). Bearing in mind the genre of movie this is, not of it's really a deal-breaker, but there's the feeling it could have been handle much more adeptly.

Back on the plus side, there's some interesting sound design in that the music stops completely for a lot of the fight-scenes, giving them a rawer feel than we're used to in these capers. And speaking of which, Jason Momoa is rather great as the main bad-guy, Keegan, being both physically threatening and very articulate when the script allows it.

There seems to be some perfect-storm of sloppy acting, writing and direction stopping Bullet To The Head from being quite as throw-away-enjoyable as it should be. It struggles bravely, but ultimately just becomes throw-away. I suspect the comic version was a lot more entertaining.

Is the trailer representative of the film?
Pretty much.

Did I laugh, cry, gasp and sigh when I was supposed to?
Not really.

Does it achieve what it sets out to do?
Not really.

Buy, pay to rent, or wait until it's on for free?
Watch it if you must, but don't pay for the privelege.

Will I think less of you if we disagree about how good/bad this film is?

Will I watch it again?
Probably not.

Is there a Wilhelm Scream?
There isn't. Which seems silly, tbh.

And because you won't be happy until I've given it a score...

And my question for YOU is…
Why is Stallone still doing this? Why, though?

• ^^^ That's dry, British humour, and most likely sarcasm or facetiousness.
• Yen's blog contains harsh language and even harsher notions of propriety. Reader discretion is advised.
• This is a 'catch-up' review. I watched this film at home, not at the cinema. I saw the trailer for this at the cinema, and I would have seen the film there too, but they didn't/couldn't show it. So now iTunes, Amazon, Netflix and Blockbuster get to reap the rewards of my local's advance-advertising, and I'm sure they're delighted. Now you may say "oh come on, they can't show everything down there", and that would be a valid point if they didn't do things like running Taken 2 for six weeks. Was it that successful? No, I don't think so. Twilight? Batman? Les Mes? Sure, go for it; if they're pulling the punters in then keep making that money. But Taken 2? I ask you. Anyway, this is essentially a DVD review, but still of a new(ish) film. There. I'm glad that's sorted.
• This is a personal blog. The views and opinions expressed here represent my own thoughts (at the time of writing) and not those of the people, institutions or organisations that I may or may not be related with unless stated explicitly.

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