This week’s films

Skin Trade

I suppose this is fallout from the Expendables films, giving Dolph Lundgren his career back and teaming him with a newer action star. He’s a lumbering, solid presence, and his mass seems to slow tiny, kinetic Tony Jaa down whenever they share the screen.

Dolph (I forget his character’s name) is a tough cop who busts a people smuggling ring run by Serb gangsters, with victims from Thailand. In the process, he kills one of the chief baddies sons. Retribution sees his home blown up, his wife and daughter killed, and him shot.

Busting out of the hospital, Dolph goes on a rampage, ending up in Thailand, where he first fights, then teams up with, Tony Jaa’s fast kicking cop. Lots of shooting, lots of fighting, blah, blah, blah.

The film starts with acknowledgement of Dolph’s age, as he foregoes a chase across the rooftops when chasing a suspect. Then it ignores it for the rest of the film, as he is blown up, shot, beaten and knifed, and just keeps on going.

Interstellar

Cooper was an astronaut, but now he’s grounded, raising corn- last of the blight free crops- and his two children somewhere in the Midwest. That is, until he coded gravitational signals that lead him to underground NASA, and a chance to leave the planet, and find new ones- through a wormhole.

The problem is, the further from Earth the story gets, the less interesting it gets. Particularly once the twist ending becomes blindingly obvious, and all the tension drains away. There was a more interesting, and challenging, story to be told about Cooper and family fighting climate change and a nascent anti-science fundamentalism to do a proper job of saving humanity.

Jupiter Ascending

Jupiter Jones is a princess, or queen, or something, in an intergalactic empire. Or, at least, she’s the exact genetic reincarnation of one. As such, she stands to inherit Earth, and save its inhabitants. If she can survive the attention of her ‘children’.

There was one Gilliam-esque sequence, as Jupiter battled bureaucracy to claim her planet, but the rest of the film just sort of washed by in an excess of effects and explosions.

Live Like A Cop, Die Like A Man

A prime slice of Polizietezza action, following the exploit of a pair of pretty boy cops in a special fast response unit. Almost as dangerous, and just as brutal, as the crooks they chase, they burn, screw and shoot their way to the big boss who had a colleague killed. Not the most tightly plotted tale, it’s enjoyable providing you can stomach some very seventies attitudes and fashions.


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