THE LAST STAND (2013)
Last Stand arrives on blu-ray today so, I thought I’d post my review of Arnold’s return to leading man status!
I’ll start off by saying it was fun seeing Arnold Schwarzenegger back in action and I liked the fact that he didn’t try to hide that he is in his 60s and isn’t quite John Matrix anymore. The film surrounds him with a likable cast such as his fellow officers “Figgy” and Sarah (Luis Guzman and Jaime Alexander) and a goofy local who collects historical firearms (Johnny Knoxville). The story however is quite generic and cliche. An escaped cartel drug lord (Eduardo Noriega) is going to try to make for the Mexican border right through Sheriff Ray Owens’ (Arnold) rural little town and his band of thugs are going to make sure he succeeds. Owens and Co. have other plans. Director Jee-woon Kim who directed the mesmerizing “I Saw The Devil” gives us a nice pace and some fun and furious action but, sadly the script is weak and the villains are extremely bland. Even the usually unsettling Peter Stormare is dull as main thug Burrell and Noriega’s cartel lord is equally bland and right out of an old Miami Vice episode. And to make a film like this really work, you have to have strong villains for our hero to face and it’s only their sheer numbers that make them a threat. And let’s not forget Forrest Whitaker who seems bored as an FBI agent who let’s drug lord Cortez escape on his watch. Despite the energetic action, overall the film would be quite forgettable if a lesser leading man was cast. It’s great to see Arnold blasting and beating up bad guys again but, once the credits roll the film doesn’t leave any more of an impression then seeing the Austrian Oak back on the screen in a lead role again. And coming from one of the greatest action icons ever and the director of one of the most intense and disturbing thrillers in recent years, it’s a bit of a let down after all is said and done.
2 and 1/2 bullets