The New Year is here, with our first 2010 film.
As it happens, this is yet another Steven Seagal film with exactly the
same plot as every other Steven Seagal film made in the past ten years or
so. Just choose any of the following choices in parentheses below and you
will be writing your own Seagal movie.
Seagal is a former (super cop, special federal op, special forces
warrior) who has to leave the position because (he is unjustly accused of
something, he refuses to obey a dishonorable order, he won't "play ball").
Disgraced and having lost everything dear to him, he works outside the law
as a free-lance tough guy, ostensibly a mercenary, but willing to take
only those jobs which conform to his own highly developed sense of honor.
Inevitably, he ends up siding with some hopeless (Russian, Mexican, poor
black American, Asian) underdogs against some corrupt (Russian, Mexican,
rich white American, Asian) forces who seem invulnerable until the Stout
Sensai stands against them, at which point they may as well head off to
Vegas and lay down a big bet against themselves because the big fella is
about to rain down fists and bullets on them at a rate they cannot begin
No matter that the baddies possess more weapons than the U.S. armed
services and an army as large as the entire population of India. No matter
that big Steve has only his giant pudgy hands and a rag-tag group of
untrained and poorly armed misfits beside him. Any sensible drug lord,
corrupt cop or white slaver facing the Chubby Combatant should immediately
stop ducking the calls from his life insurance agent and sit down for the
dreaded complimentary coverage review, because he is about to shake hands
with the Reaper.
This particular version of the by-the-numbers story represents the
second collaboration between the Stout Soldier and director Keoni Waxman,
following 2009's The Keeper. The Keeper is rated 8th of the 34 Seagal
films with an IMDb score, and I'd agree that it is an above average effort
relative to Seagal's career. A Dangerous Man is not as good, probably
below the Big Steve mid-point. It's dark, the plot can be incoherent at
times, there's a lot of dubbing, and the fight scenes are mucked up with a
lot of speed-ups.
But maybe I'm just splitting hairs, since all Seagal's films seem to
have the same script.
It's that one again.