Safe (2012) Movie Retro Review by Darrin Gauthier

SAFE.png

Director: Boaz Yakin
Writer: Boaz Yakin
Stars: Jason Statham, Catherine Chan, Chris Sarandon

Plot:  Mei, a young girl whose memory holds a priceless numerical code, finds herself pursued by the Triads, the Russian mob, and corrupt NYC cops. Coming to her aid is an ex-cage fighter whose life was destroyed by the gangsters on Mei’s trail.

Running Time: 1 hour 34 minutes

IMDB Score: 6.5

Why I Watched it: I’m a sucker for Jason Statham movies, I regret it a lot but I can’t help myself.

Random Thoughts: Jason Statham is a tricky as an action star, he works a lot and that means not all his movies are good but he’s always Jason Statham and that’s comforting and add to the fact that he’s a solid actor and he’s very likable so in the end I like him as an actor but not always his films but I will give him credit he does pick some different films.

What I liked: This i a different film than I thought I was getting, the trailers looked standard, one bad ass protects a young girl we’ve seen it a bunch, now I think it’s the first time Statham has jumped into this sub-genre, but this film was a bit darker and a bit grittier than I was expecting.  The set up is fine and I think Statham does good work here, he’s mastered the anti-hero stance where he doesn’t want to help but you know he will and his back story here is dark.  The stakes are pretty high cause you believe these people will kill a little girl, here story is also very dark, not a happy film.  This isn’t one of those popcorn action films, not tongue in check, it’s a hard R film.  It really worked for me cause it felt like it could go very dark and at times it did do that and it made it more interesting.

The acting is good across the board, also good to see vets like Burke and Sarandon also liked Anson Mount as a slick and pretty bad dude.  The film did move along pretty well nice pacing to the film.  I will also say I was surprised at how complicated the plot was we had mobs, dirty cops, Statham’s back story and the girls isn’t cut and dry, the script was at least trying. I should talk about the action, it was good not great, it moved well and the end was decently done. Statham is such a physical force that it’s always fun to see him fight, more gun fights here though.

What I Didn’t like: It was a tad sleazy for me, also I’m never a fan of putting young kids in danger, cheap heat for me.  Also the film’s tone kind of up and down at times, stuck between being a gritty almost noir thriller to an all out action film. The film also gave us “dirty cops” instead of characters, and this film was loaded with not great guys, like I said I liked the fact that it was gritty but this sometimes but it’s toe over the line. Also I would have liked more character stuff with Statham and a lot of the action was just alright, just average.

Final Thoughts: For the most part I enjoyed it, it was a film that kind of just came and went but for me it’s s decent film with a solid Statham performance and like I said just different enough to make it fun.

Rating: 6/10

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