Female MMA superstar Gina Carano stepped out of the octagon and onto the big screen in hopes to become the next big action heroine and has been doing a decent job with her turns in ‘Haywire’ and ‘Fast and Furious 6’. Now she is taking the lead again with her latest film In The Blood and bringing on a decent cast including Cam Gigandet, Danny Trejo, Luis Guzman, Stephen Lang, and Amaury Nolasco, but is she able to once again score a knockout or will you want to tap out before the bell rings?
In The Blood follows a woman whose husband goes missing during their Caribbean vacation and she sets off on her own to take down the men she thinks are responsible. Although her last couple of films were on a bigger scale, with this film Carano feels right at home. Make no mistake she was great in the others, but this stripped down gritty film gave her the chance to cut lose. The story here is pretty simple and is reminiscent of action films of the 90s which was a welcomed treat. They do a decent job to set everything up that will be needed for later aspects of the film without over cluttering it trying to get to the action. Her backstory explaining her training felt a bit forced, but does lend itself to expand upon if they wanted to do a sequel to the film without it needed to connect to this one at all. The reasoning behind the film at the end is a bit far-fetched as is how they ended it, but makes little consequence to the reasoning you really want to check out this film and that’s the action.
We all know Carano can bring the pain, but the first half of this film allows her to just take time to be a woman in love and for a brief moment will make you forget how dangerous she actually is. The action is great with numerous moments for Carano to just kick some major ass, but never taking it out of the realm of believability. It’s obviously well-known she can fight, but she brings a rare quality on film with her sequences that almost makes you feel it every time she hits someone as opposed to the usual Hollywood fight. Every fight is raw and brutal that pulls no punches allowing her to use her hardcore style and blend it with the film world without having to make it watered down.
Carano is still finding her footing with the acting side, but has been getting better with each role and of course more than makes up for any shortcomings with her sheer presence and fight abilities. The rest of the cast do a decent enough job with their roles with Danny Trejo just there for a brief amount of time, but still having a major impact on the story overall. The real interesting aspect to this film is the flipped roles of the woman being the hero and the husband needing to be rescued which worked fine, but having someone like Cam Gigandet, who has the action chops himself, play more of the victim gives it a unique twist.
This film isn’t the big budget action film that we have gotten from her so far and feels more like the straight to video release, but it still manages to deliver exactly what the fans would want. Make no mistake unless you are a fan of any of the cast or old school martial arts films then you probably won’t dig it, but if you are then check it out even if it is just to see Carano kick more major ass.
Get in on the action when In The Blood hits Blu-ray and DVD on June 3rd.