Release date: March 28, 2014
Written by: Skip Woods and David Ayer
Directed by: David Ayer
The title for Arnold's latest mindless action flick is aptly titled movie to hit theatres in a long time. "Sabotage" offers up an interesting premise, but somewhere along the line, the script gets in its own way and completely ruins any promise of an engaging flick.
"Sabotage" opens with a gruesome viral video of a woman being tortured. Arnold Schwarzenegger is watching, because that's his wife and it's not going to end pretty. Cut to many months later and Arnold is leading his team of crazy DEA swat agents on a drug raid, which they use as a chance to alleviate $10 million, which they intend to split until the money goes missing, leaving everyone one to point fingers at each other, even if it takes them too long to figure out there is a rat.
The rest of the film sees the rest of Arnold's crew getting picked off one by one in gory, horror movie fashion, as the government investigators circle them for answers about the missing 10 mil. On top of that, the deaths add on a homicide investigation that never quite feels like it's a by-the-book way of investigating crimes of this nature. It seems more like something Internal Affairs would handle. But the movie never tries to hard to make much sense.
Director David Ayer delivers a relentlessly violent flick, but there is zero to care about. All of the characters are wooden and one dimensional, most of them screaming dialogue that could have been written to be interchangeable between any of them. There is little to differentiate any of these over the top, maniacal characters -- and that goes for the women too. Why is it so hard to write tough, smart female characters that don't act and talk like men?
It's unfortunate, because there might be a great ensemble action movie cast at play here. Sure, Arnold is looking tired and really, really old but he can still kick a little ass. The rest of the cast is filled with good role players including Josh Holloway, Sam Worthington, Max Martini, and Joe Manganiello, all done in by the sloppy, heartless script. But poor Mireille Enos and Olivia Williams are stuck playing two of the worst written female characters in recent action movie history -- and that's saying a lot.
All of this could have been forgiven had Ayer and co-writer Skip Woods been able to wrap things up in a way made it all worth while. But by the time the ridiculous plot twists reveal themselves, its impossible to care about any of the characters and their motives.
"Sabotage" earns its R rating with it's excessively unnecessary gory violence and it's language, but at least it stays true to its title. It's an interesting premise, but a woeful script and awful characters sabotage what could have been a great action movie.
Running time: 1 hour 49 mins
Rating: Rated R for strong bloody violence, pervasive language, some sexuality/nudity and drug use
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