From director Niels Arden Oplev (the original “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” series), “Dead Man Down” looks like a thriller with real potential; it has grit, action, and most importantly revenge in twofold. Oplev carries with him his muse Noomi Rapace and Colin Farrell, but the film’s action spoils the suspense of the film, especially with an over-the-top finale.
Victor (Colin Farrell) works for Alphonse (Terrence Howard) doing violent crimes with his buddy Darcy (Dominic Cooper). He longs for a relaxing life away from the violence and meets his scarred neighbor Beatrice (Noomi Rapace). She wants revenge for the accident that left her disfigured and Victor seems to be the only person that can help. Meanwhile, Alphonse is being taunted by a mysterious person looking for revenge, so his team tries to track down the secret man.
The first half of “Dead Man Down” is appealing enough and introduces two mostly likeable main characters. Each is interesting on their own, but the romance is lacking. Farrell and Rapace don’t have as much chemistry as one would expect, but their characters have enough of an adorable bond to make them more personable despite their dark hearts.
“Dead Man Down” falters in its second half; it attempts to thrill with adrenaline and overcomplicates its storyline to make it seem smarter than it is. Some of the dialogue even spells out too much. The biggest problem, though, is definitely its merging of action and suspenseful thriller. The finale is extreme and absurd.
An unfortunate side effect of the adrenaline boost is that the supporting cast barely comes to life. Isabelle Huppert, Dominic Cooper, F. Murray Abraham, and Armand Assante are wasted paychecks because they barely receive any attention.
“Dead Man Down” is intriguing enough without being difficult to follow. It pretends to be more intelligent, romantic, and action-packed than it is, but it’s an acceptable film to distract for a couple of hours.
Rating for “Dead Man Down:” C+
For more information on this film or to view its trailer, click here.
“Dead Man Down” is currently playing at most theaters across Columbus, including Movie Tavern and Marcus Crosswoods and Pickerington, but don’t expect it to last much longer. For showtimes, click here.