The Last Stand (15)
Dir. Jee-woon Kim
Reviewed by Matt Adcock
Welcome to Sommerton, a sleepy little one-horse border town that is home to ageing Sheriff Ray Owens (Arnold Schwarzenegger). Nothing much exciting happens here… until now… as it seems that evil crime cartel boss Cortez ((Eduardo ‘ Tesis’ Noriega) is on the run from the FBI in a suped up sports car, backed up by a small army and Sommerton will be the place where he attempts to cross over into Mexico. That leaves just Arnie in his way…
Slick Korean director Kim ‘I Saw The Devil’ Ji-woon goes for broke in The Last Stand – his English language debut, sticking to the tried and tested (and tired) goodies vs baddies plotline but amping up enough just tasty car and gun battle action to make this feel like a bona-fide ‘80s throwback…
"who are you callling old?"
Helping Owens defend his town / try to stop Cortez are a motley crew consisting of washed up army vet Frank Martinez (Rodrigo ‘soon to reprise his role as Xerxes in 300: Rise of an Empire) Santoro, loveable but disposable Deputy Jerry Bailey (Zach Gilford) and Lewis Dinkum (Johnny ‘JackAss’ Knoxville).
Token cute female goodie duty goes to Jamie ‘Thor’ Alexander who is balanced by double-crossing bad agent Christie (Christiana ‘Hollywood Whores’ Leucas). Also on hand is Forest Whitaker, over acting his heart out as FBI Agent Bannister – he gets some truly cringy dialogue such as “Great - we’ve got a psychopath in the Batmobile!”
Everything plods along in a build up to the frantic gunplay final showdown which is actually great fun and makes the film worth a watch. There is much tongue-in-cheek humour including standard après kill one liners which include a wonderful vigilant grandma!?
"not sure we have enough guns..."
I love Arnie – Terminator, Predator, Commando, True Lies, Conan The Barbarian, even Red Heat and The Running Man were campy fun… So it was a joy to see him kicking ass again, and in some style, Knoxville gives good goofy support and the Seven Samurai feel of the bunch of misfits trying to fight a heavily tooled up team of uber crooks is pleasing on many levels.
What was odd though was when it came to the inevitable one-on-one climactic fight I was actually worried for Schwarzenegger in the that he might do himself a mischief other than having his head kicked in – more like ‘ohhh mind your back Arnie – are you sure it’s a good idea to try n pick that baddie up?’ Talk about audience involvement!?
The Last Stand is definitely worth a look for action flick fans and anyone who watched the classic Arnies of time gone by!
ööö - Stupid, trashy fun all the way
3 – Arnie is back, and still delivers
Awesomeness öööö – gunfights here are well erm 'executed'
Laughs ööö – some good one liners and generally humorous tone
Horror öö – not very nasty
Babes ööö – Alexander wears a good uniform
Spiritual Enlightenment öö - stand up for what's right!
"Jamie Alexander - undercover!?"