Hi.

Welcome to my website. To the left here you have a listing of all my film reviews over the last 7 years.  In addition, go to the SUCK page for movies I hated and the Good Days page for some of my absolute favs. Hope you have a nice stay!

XXX: RETURN OF XANDER CAGE Review: 7 out of 10 (Will the real Suicide Squad please stand up?)

XXX: RETURN OF XANDER CAGE Review: 7 out of 10 (Will the real Suicide Squad please stand up?)

Well, it is never too late to resurrect a sort of forgettable action franchise I suppose.  Vin Diesel's Xander Cage has been dead for eleven years in more ways than one... but add in an all star cast, a sure fire director and *BANG* you get an action film. Directed by D. J. Caruso it stars Vin DieselDonnie YenTony JaaToni Collette and Samuel L. Jackson. Well, Jackson is more of a cameo, really...

In case you might have forgotten the silly premise, Xander Cage (Vin Diesel) is an extreme athlete (back in 2002 when the X games were cool, remember) turned government operative.  We know he is Xtreme because of the "X" in his name and all his tattoos. In the opening sequence, Xander jungle skis, skateboards, and parkours just to hook up cable television.  Think of what he might do when it comes to fighting bad guys.  Xander was thought to be long dead, but comes out of self-imposed exile and recruited by the CIA to track down the villain Xiang (Donnie Yen) to recover a powerful weapon known as "Pandora's Box" which can control military satellites and cause them to come crashing down to earth with catastrophic damage. However, all we really need to know is bad guys have a thing to destroy the world and Xander needs to go get it. Recruiting a group of thrill-seeking cohorts that includes a sharpshooter a hacker (of course), and a DJ (yes, seriously) Xander dons his oversized fur coat and goes out to fight and win and beat villains and stuff in the most XTREME ways.  

And the result is dumb.  It is eye-rolling at times and downright silly at others.  But when the action is there it is pretty damn great. It is even one of those action plots that the villains are so cool and awesome that once everyone realizes there is someone even more evil and worse than all of them, everyone teams up together to fight them off.  You know, like every other action film from the 2000s. Most importantly, what Star Wars fans now know, this film re-emphasizes: Donnie Yen is a badass.  Tony Jaa is nearly his equal too. And with Vin's gravely voice quipping all the one-liners, this movie feels very throwback to the Stallone/Schawarzaneggar era.  Maybe closer to the Dolph Lundgren or Van Damme era in truth.  

For any fans disappointed in this summer's SUICIDE SQUAD, consider this: XXX:RoXC is about a group of rag-tag villains hired by the government to go on an impossible mission to save the planet.  There is a sharpshooter, a bearded Brit, a wisecracking girl, plenty of ass kicking and even "splash" pages explaining who each character is and their unique powers.  If audiences are willing to view XXX: RETURN OF XANDER CAGE through the lens of superhero flicks, there is plenty here to enjoy.  Loud, goofy, and dumb with great stunt sequences and predictable one-liners that will still make you grin. I wanted to hate it, and part of it I did.  But there is too much fun here to ignore.

 

JOHN WICK: CHAPTER 2 Review: 6 out of 10 (A Belabored Bloody Ballet)

JOHN WICK: CHAPTER 2 Review: 6 out of 10 (A Belabored Bloody Ballet)

SPLIT Review: 8 out of 10 (Another bad Shyamalan movie? PSYCH!)

SPLIT Review: 8 out of 10 (Another bad Shyamalan movie? PSYCH!)