Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Movie Journal: Last Man Standing

Ever feel that when it comes to action films, you've seen it all? You're not the only one. That's why action filmmakers struggle constantly to bring forward movies that at least look or feel different than those that came before. Last Man Standing is unlike any action flick I've ever seen in my life, but I wonder if it's really the better for it.

Though I have not seen Sin City yet, I imagine it's very similar to this film. Bruce Willis stars a man without a conscience and in search of peace and refuge; presumably from the authorities. He comes to a small, dusty town on the outskirts of Texas, called Jericho. It's here he discovers two gangs warring for control of the town. Being an experienced gunman, he decides that this may be his chance to make some easy money.

The storyline is guided, much as in Sin City, by Bruce Willis' entrancing voice-over narrative. The events that unfold are interesting and engaging to watch, and the dialogue, especially many of Bruce Willis' lines, are very memorable. However, as the movie moves quickly from one scene to the next, as we watch everything unfold, you can't shake the feeling that the final shootout won't be quite so climactic after so many twists and turns.

Watching Bruce Willis gun down his enemies one by one can be exciting for sure, but where are the plot twists? The drama? Sadly, they are not present in the third act; perhaps what is often the most important act in an entire film. I wouldn't want you to miss out on some great dialogue and ingeniously choreographed action, but just don't expect this movie to deliver as other truly great action films have done before it.

7 out of 10

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