Game of Death (2010) Blu-ray Review

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Reviewed by Cas Harlow, 11th March 2011.
I would like to think that my taste in movies is quite broad and (almost) all-encompassing, from the Big Screen Blockbusters like The Dark Knight and Inception, to the small-scale indie stuff like Monsters and Fish Tank; from foreign thrillers like The Millennium Trilogy to Brit classics like The Ipcress File. And I even have a soft spot for ageing 80s action stars, who seem to have been almost universally relegated to the Straight-to-DVD pit, only seldom popping their heads out to see the rest of the world turning around them. Watching movies from this pit, you have to drop your standards considerably to enjoy any of them, and take what you can get from the low budget, bad acting, poor sets, generic story, stale dialogue and limited action. Occasionally there’s a surprise to be found: whether it’s a proper quality action-thriller like Van Damme’s Universal Soldier: Regeneration, or a comedy-value production (unintentionally hilarious because of its poor standards) – normally at the hands of dwindling relic Steven Seagal. These days Wesley Snipes is more famous for his tax evasion than for his contributions to film, but he’s one of the few 80s action stars who proved himself as an actor before he started throwing his fists around so it’s truly a shame that, after having provided scene-stealing support in 2009’s Brooklyn’s Finest, he has so swiftly dropped back into the Straight-to-DVD pit. Worse still, he has given us surely one of the worst DTV movies in existence, a true all-time low, which has terrible acting, horrendously-delivered already-trite dialogue, unimaginative low budget settings, jarring directorial flourishes, and poorly-staged stagnant action scenes. It really doesn’t take much to entertain me when it comes to these action stars, I’m pretty consistently forgiving, but this really is an all-time low. I’d recommend watching every single other one of Snipes’s movies before you consider picking this one up.

On Region B-locked UK Blu-ray the video and audio are decent enough for the material, and the disc isn’t quite bare-bones, but I can’t honestly see who is going to even give this a rental. I actually wanted the film to work, but if I’d have known it would have been this bad, I would have stayed away. Do what you must, but consider yourself warned.


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Jedit

Active Member
I think Snipes can be forgiven for taking this project, Cas. He made it during the period after his conviction when he was allowed to remain free so he could start making reparations for the tax fraud. In his shoes, I'd be taking any job I could if I thought it would help reduce my forthcoming jail sentence.
 

Casimir Harlow

Blu-ray Reviewer
I think Snipes can be forgiven for taking this project, Cas. He made it during the period after his conviction when he was allowed to remain free so he could start making reparations for the tax fraud. In his shoes, I'd be taking any job I could if I thought it would help reduce my forthcoming jail sentence.

I hear you, but I'm not sure that excuses his terrible acting. Having to take any job he can get just to pay off his tax bills may be a reasonable enough excuse for partaking in this dire mess, but sleepwalking through it and delivering a truly awful, disinterested performance, is not as easy to justify.
 

Jedit

Active Member
I hear you, but I'm not sure that excuses his terrible acting. Having to take any job he can get just to pay off his tax bills may be a reasonable enough excuse for partaking in this dire mess, but sleepwalking through it and delivering a truly awful, disinterested performance, is not as easy to justify.

How interested would you be in your job, if every penny you made past your expenses was going to the excise? ;)
 

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