Entertainment » Movies

Bullet to the Head

by Jake Mulligan
Contributor
Saturday Jul 20, 2013
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"Bullet to the Head" is a movie about aging, outdated old men, and unfortunately, it was made by a few of them. In the 1970s, Walter Hill was among the greatest of all action filmmakers - his "The Warriors" remains an all-time classic, among a career full of great films. But this latest-and-likely-to-be-his-last effort, featuring Sylvester Stallone as a hitman-done-wrong and Sung Kang ("Fast & Furious") as the cop morally obligated to help him on his quest for vengeance, doesn’t even pass muster compared to some of his worst work. He’s not just outdated - he’s become incompetent.

But the film, to its credit, tries to grapple with that dilemma. (Right before Hill’s directorial credit comes on screen, Sly is berated for being so old.) Kang constantly outsmarts Sly’s character, the latter’s antiquated detective work rendered irrelevant by the speed and convenience of an iPhone. But as the two troll through New Orleans looking for vengeance, old-fashioned muscle comes in handy: Christian Slater plays a corporate bigwig who fashioned the killings that pissed these men off, but a special ops soldier, axe in hand, emerges as their most potent enemy. Bullets are shot, blades are swung, and revenge, of course, is gained.

The Blu-ray doesn’t offer much for fans of the film, if they exist - merely a short (less than ten minute) promotional featurette offering interviews with the cast and crew. It’s clear the crew are all trying to recreate the magic of their days past, looking to rediscover the energy they had making this type of nitty-gritty-badasses-gone-haywire action movie back in the 1980s. But that mood is gone, and so is that talent they had when it was around. Seeing Sly swing that axe around, strained mania in his eyes, Hill’s camera sheepishly shake its way around the fight, filming with none of the confidence it had in years past; you wish these aging prizefighters had left their boots strung up.

"Bullet to the Head"
Blu-ray/DVD/Digital Copy Pack
$35.99
warnerbros.com

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