This is a straight-to-DVD Van Damme film in which the Belgian Chuck Norris,
working for the Border Patrol, illegally violates Mexican sovereignty in
pursuit of some drug lords, then single-handedly defeats an entire army of
renegade Special Forces operatives, and an entire Mexican jail full of
desperados, all while operating with no authority nor back-up on Mexican soil.
I have to admit that Jean-Claude Van Damme has surprised the hell out of me
and become a quite capable actor. Oh, he's not going to take any Shakespeare work away
from Kenneth Branagh, but he's gotten quite good at playing the type of roles
he gets, and he can still fight gracefully and forcefully even though his face
looks older than his 47 years. He did an excellent acting job in his previous movie, Until
Death, which was a pretty damned (Dammed?) good straight-to-vid in which J-C
played a complex anti-hero living in the real world. That film was good
enough, and he was good enough in it, that he seemed to be making some real
progress toward a comeback. The Shepherd Border Patrol is a significant
regression from that progress. This one is a reversion to his old style of
unrealistically noble and invulnerable hero living in a masturbatory fantasy
which vacillates between heroic violence and sappy sentimentality. The classic
example of the latter is that JC carries around a cute pet rabbit in memory of
his dead daughter. You see, the animal had been her beloved pet until she
overdosed on Mexican drugs. Now JC has sworn to protect the bunny while wiping
out the cartel responsible for those drugs.
I hear you snickering, but here's a tip for you wiseacres: don't make fun of his bunny unless your
medical insurance is paid up.
OK, I'm kidding. Call it a D+. It's not utterly awful, but I
consider a C- or higher to be a recommendation to at least some
specialized audiences, and I would not
want anyone to watch this based on my opinion.