Two opposites attract—at the boxoffice, that is!
It’s Hollywood’s current major action star Jason Statham in this weekend’s face-off with actor’s actor Anthony Hopkins who’s practicing exorcism on this go-around. With both practicing what they do best; desperately trying to overcome basic B-movie material.
First off it’s kick-ass Jason Statham as Arthur Bishop—a.k.a. THE MECHANIC—a top of the line assassin described by his mentor Donald Sutherland as "a goddamned machine." A totally detached hit-man who’ll do any job if the price is right.
Statham’s latest target—his mentor (Sutherland). Will he actually go through with it?
Damn right he will!!
But there must be a flicker of feelings somewhere as he now teams with Sutherland’s son in a deadly partnership of revenge.
Haven’t we’ve seen this before?
We have! Because THE MECHANIC is a remake of Charles Bronson’s 1972 original. But that’s about as far as the comparison goes.
This version is definitely more stylish. Higher octane. Bloodier. With less dialogue—tailor made for Statham.
Vengeance is an R-rated mission here. On that level THE MECHANIC delivers 3 out of 5 badass fingers.
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When it comes to PG-13 rated exorcism there’s very little in THE RITE we haven’t seen before.
OK, so it’s ‘Inspired by a True Story’—still it covers very little new ground.
Not even a few spinning heads or Campbell’s green split pea soup spewing in this thriller!
In THE RITE Colin O’Donogue plays skeptical Chicago seminary student Michael Kovak who reluctantly accepts an advance study program of devil demolition. Sort of an exorcism school—at the Vatican! And who better to teach the course than unorthodox priest Anthony Hopkins who introduces Michael to the dark side of his faith.
A lot of demonic possession in this one, but not enough to overcome a tiresome script. Only reason to take THE RITE would be witnessing Hopkin’s intriguing acting abilities which he desperately implements here in hopes of rising above the film itself.
THE RITE—a low calorie exorcism thriller raising 2-1/2 out of 5 skeptical fingers.
So what’ll be this weekend?
High octane Jason Statham or Anthony Hopkins’ Vatican adventure? For my time and money it would instead be BLUE VALENTINE starring Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams.
JACK GOES TO THE MOVIES Friday mornings on KMBZ / KUDL / KXTR—and anytime on Time-Warner Cable’s K.C. ON DEMAND, Channel 113.