Transit 17 (2019) Movie Review

Director: Guy Bleyaert

Writer: Guy Bleyaert (Screenplay)

Starring: Guy Bleyaert, Zara Phythian, Lee Charles, Silvio Simac, Kimberly Stahl, Stefanie Joosten, John Flanders

Plot: After a virus infected France, Belgium and the Netherlands a team of resistance soldiers trying to safe a young girl who seems to be their last hope for a cure.

Runtime: 1 Hour 25 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Escape from New York Meets The Last of Us

Story: Transit 17 starts when Tex (Bleyaert) and his team Eve (Phythian), Brad (Charles), Deena (Stahl) and Daniel get assigned to a rescue missing in Belgium, in a world where a virus has wiped out most of the population. The team knows the threats they will be facing, with infected hunting them down, but the mission is worth the risk, as it could lead to a cure to save the whole world from becoming completely wiped out.

Thoughts on Transit 17

Characters – Tex is leading the team on the mission, the rest of the crew will trust him to make the right decisions no matter what, he does have to make difficult decisions, but knows that this mission could change everything. Eve and Brad are both big parts of the team and feel like most soldiers we have seen in most film like this, the characters we do meet are soldiers and military people that are preparing for the operation and add in the 15-year-old they must try to save.

PerformancesThis is a film where the performances are not going to be seen as it strength, one of the problems here comes from nearly all the characters being portrayed as serious, which makes everybody too similar, not letting any of the actors make their character standout in anyway.

StoryThe story follows a group of soldiers who go on a mission to save a teenage girl in an infected virus world that could hold the cure for the world. The story does seem to borrow from the ideas behind Escape from New York, with the team needing to rescue somebody in danger and also the game The Last of Us, which focuses on the idea one person could be immune, which would be key to the survival of the rest of the humans. While the story flows well enough, the characters just feel under developed, with them being too similar and most situation being simple action that just ends up coming off like something that doesn’t want to risk anything.

ActionThe action doesn’t get to any level of intensity, which does leave us not getting excited about the bullets flying around.

SettingsThe film tells us we are going through parts of Belgium, only we don’t really get to see anything other than strongholds in the survival from the infected, using now iconic locations through the film.

Scene of the Movie – Look at the bite.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – We just don’t get the level of intensity we could have.

Final Thoughts This is a simple action film that borrows from a couple of major properties, only it just doesn’t end up getting to the levels of intensity that it could have by the end of the film.

Overall: Simple Action.


Art of Deception (2019) Movie Review

Director: Richard Ryan

Writer: Richard Ryan, Michael Marcelin (Screenplay)

Starring: Richard Ryan, Jackie Nova, Nicholas Talone, Leon van Waas, Prince Toe

Plot: After uncovering the CIA’s ruthless master plan for world domination by gaining complete mind control over the entire population, top scientist Joseph Markham is ultimately left with a choice: save the lives of billions…or the life of his wife, who has been kidnapped, interrogated, and brutally tortured as she viciously fights for her life. As a nationwide manhunt ensues, deadly assassins pursue, and one man’s decision will determine the fate of the world, Art of Deception is about a fight for life, love and world dominance,

Runtime: 1 Hour 30 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Late Night Action Treat

Story: Art of Deception starts as Joseph Markham (Ryan) and his wife Valentina (Nova) are planning their future, with Joseph’s work for the CIA coming to an end, he has been part of project which would redefine the world with the project leader Roland Smith (Waas) wanting to tie up all loose ends that worked on the project.

Joseph goes on the run after learning Roland wants to terminate both himself and Valentina, but Roland isn’t prepared for what is coming next, when he learns that both a highly skilled assassination that know how to survive against the odds, with Joseph needing to make a difficult decision on whether to stop the CIA plan or save his wife.

Thoughts on Art of Deception

Characters – Joseph Markham has been working for the CIA on a top-secret mind control project, it has reached the final stages with the final test being a success. He along with his wife soon become targets for the CIA who don’t want loose ends, which means Joseph will show his skills and training that his boss never knew he had, he will uses his training to stay alive and plan to expose the truth to the world. Valentina is the wife of Joseph, she is just as deadly, despite being held captive, she knows how the stay alive. Roland Smith is the project leader that wants to tie up any loose ends involved in the project, he doesn’t want anybody being able to spill the plans and puts all his effort into killing the Markham’s.

PerformancesRichard Ryan in the leading role and on directing duties handles everything very well, with he combat scenes, showing his character’s deadly ability along with using the brains to stay ahead of the game. Jackie Nova brings us the feisty character that is the highlight of her screen time. Leon van Waas makes for the fun over the top villain through the film.

StoryThe story here follows a couple that become targets of the CIA after their work for them, where they show their skills to survive and expose the truth about the project. This does follow everything we know from a late night action story, we have a skilled killer that must come out of his retired decision to protect himself, his wife and the world, when the moment comes for him to shine. We do have a villain that does following everything we are expecting to see with his evil plan that does need to be stopped. We can easily sit back and relax through this film, with the feisty dialogue being used through the film too.

ActionThe action in the film is easy to watch, we deal with different fight scenes, with different fighting techniques being used to show skills behind the characters.

SettingsThe film does keep the settings simple, we do have the CIA offices which sees the tight corridors when it comes to dealing with the fights and the secret locations where kidnapped people will be held.

Scene of the Movie – The plan to save the day.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – We could have had more combat sequences from Valentina.

Final Thoughts This is a fun late night action film that could be enjoyed by all the action junkies, it keeps most things simple, without being down as plain.

Overall: Fun Action Film.

Rambo: Last Blood (2019) Movie Review

Director: Adrian Grunberg

Writer: Matthew Cirulnick, Sylvester Stallone (Screenplay) Dan Gordon, Sylvester Stallone (Story)

Starring: Sylvester Stallone, Paz Vega, Yvette Monreal, Louis Mandylor, Oscar Jaenada, Sheila Shah, Sergio Peris-Mencheta

Plot: Rambo must confront his past and unearth his ruthless combat skills to exact revenge in a final mission.

Tagline – They Drew First Blood. He Will Draw Last.

Runtime: 1 Hour 29 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Bloody Soaked Action

Story: Rambo: Last Blood starts as John (Stallone) has returned to a quiet life helping raise Gabrielle (Monreal) on his ranch, when she learns of the location of her father in Mexico, she heads down there becoming the latest victim of the Martinez brother Victor (Jaenada) and Hugo (Peris-Mencheta) and their prostitution ring.

John goes in search of her, starting a war with the gang, one that will have casualties on both sides, but will let him use all of his skills as a solider, unleashing the monstrous side to his time in combat.

Thoughts on Rambo: Last Blood

Characters – John Rambo is the war veteran we all know, he has retired to a small ranch away from the world, where he has created a series of tunnels, he has helped raise Gabrielle and wants her to achieve what he couldn’t in life, with college in her future. When she goes missing, John turns the switch he keeps on the off button, becoming the soldier that will kill anybody in his way, dealing with the traumas of war and not caring about the consequences, he starts a war with the Mexican gang, one that he is prepared to end. Gabrielle is like a daughter to John, he help raise her with her love of horse riding helping their bond, she is ready for college, but the one question she wants more than anything is why her father left her, which sees her go against John’s request to Mexico in search for him. She gets drugged at forced into prostitution, with no way of escaping her captors. Victor and Hugo Martinez are running the operation, they use the girls up and sell them, they use the gang numbers to deal with any unwanted attention, including John and if a girl escapes, they will make them pay. They are pretty much routine Mexican villains though.

PerformancesSylvester Stallone is back in one of his favourite franchises, he does keep John looking a lot more like a true veteran that is still haunted by his nightmares of war, even if he is mumbling his way through the film. Yvette Monreal fills her role with ease, naïve young girl, while both Oscar Jaenada and Sergio Peris-Mencheta don’t put a foot wrong in the villainous roles.

StoryThe story here follows a retired calm John Rambo that is called into action when his adoptive daughter gets taken by a gang in Mexico and he will go to any lengths to get his revenge at save her. When it comes to this style of action film, the story doesn’t need to be very deep at all, in fact the basic plot is broken down as war veteran takes on gang who took family member, lots of bodies left lying. We do get glimpses at the idea that John is still dealing with the traumas of his experiences in war, though they are very small, if we didn’t have these, we could have easily have had just another older military person doing the same thing, it didn’t need to be Rambo for the most part. Saying this, it was nice to see Rambo returning to what made his actions popular in the First Blood, with his stealth ability over the countless bullets flying around. This is everything you want and need from a Rambo movie when it comes to the story.

Action/WesternThe action in the film does take it time to get going, but when Rambo starts, my word this is one of the most graphic action movies you will see, certain sequences will make John Wick’s kills look like a Disney movie.

SettingsThe film does use the Mexico setting for the fish out of water when it comes to John wanting to take the fight to them, so he makes them bring to the fight to him, showing us how deadly he is when he knows the land. The settings are key to the final act of the movie.

Special EffectsThe effects are brutal, when it comes to the injuries people were wincing in the cinema at certain moments, they don’t hold back in anyway.

Scene of the Movie – Whole final act.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – Certain stories don’t seem to get an ending.

Final Thoughts This is one of the most violent action films that you will ever see, it uses the brutal action to highlight Rambo’s military skills and doesn’t hold back in anyway.

Overall: Graphic, Violent, Rambo’s Back.

Eternal Code (2019) Movie Review

Director: Harley Wallen

Writer: Harley Wallen (Screenplay)

Starring: Scout Taylor-Compton, Richard Tyson, Billy Wirth, Mel Novak, Yan Birch, Vida Ghaffari, Colleen Gentry, Damien Chinappi, Erika Hoveland

Plot: After a revolutionary invention with great implications Bridget finds a character flaw in the company they’ve partnered with to develop the prototype that could be the fountain of youth. When she pulls the plug and step away from their original deal she quickly realizes they will stop at nothing to get it back. After her family gets kidnapped to sway a favorable vote their hopes rely on their teen daughter Miranda and her unlikely allies Corey (a suicidal military veteran) and Stephanie (a prostitute). 

Runtime: 1 Hour 45 Minutes

There may be spoilers in the rest of the review

Verdict: Twist Filled Actioner

Story: Eternal Code starts as an inventor Bridget (Hoveland) wants to put the pull on her invention because her boss Oliver (Tyson) wants to use it for the wrong reasons, her husband Mark (Wirth) is pushed into helping her change her mind, despite the fact she isn’t budging, meanwhile a homeless war veteran Corey (Chinappi) helps defend a prostitute Stephanie (Kaiti Wallen) proving he has been doing the right thing in life.

Oliver plans to kidnapped Bridget’s daughter Miranda (Cama), which sees him hire a group of criminals Sam (Harley Wallen) and Charlie (Taylor-Compton) to use her kidnapping of Mark and Bridget as leverage, which see Corey stepping up to defend Miranda to fight for the right once again.

Thoughts on Eternal Code

Characters – Corey is a homeless suicidal war veteran, he keeps to himself and when he gets given money, he spends the money on helping the fellow homeless, being friendly with lonely older men in the park and helping somebody in danger. He will get a chance to use his skills once again to help a teenage girl who is being hunted down by criminals, his skills will help make him deadly to anyone who crosses his path. Oliver is the leader of the project, he wants to continue using it for his own good, which means he will go to the extremes to make sure it gets done. Charlie is one of the criminals that has taken the family members, she along with her team are solely in this for the money. Mark is the husband of Bridget, he tries to advice, even though he will only support her decision. Bridget is the woman that has invented a revolutionary idea, which she doesn’t want used for the wrong thing, her pulling the plug has set about the events including her kidnapping.

PerformancesThis is a movie that does try to use the biggest names to sale the movie, Scout Taylor-Compton being the biggest name in the film, even though she is mostly just a criminal thug, she doesn’t give us a bad performance, just she isn’t really a main character. Damien Chinappi would be one of the leads in the film as the he does bring us a performance that does fit the action side of the film, where we do feel sympathy for his character. Richard Tyson will always make for a great villain and this is no different. When we look at the rest of the cast, we see solid performances across the board.

StoryThe story here follows the events of a kidnapping which takes a turn, when a war veteran looks to help the helpless, while a corrupt businessman looks to complete a project which will change everything as we know it in the world. When it comes to the idea of the kidnapping side of the story, we do get a nice spin on how everything unfolds, making it truly unpredictable with what will happen next. While that is a good thing, it can mean we do meet a couple of too many characters, which doesn’t let other get flushed out enough. We are left with seeing just how dealing with inventions will see people looking for greed, while seeing a war veteran getting another shot to prove himself in combat is nice to see.

ActionThe action is restricted, but it does show how the conflicts are meant to be edgy and more in the shadows which is better to watch for the tone.

SettingsThe film is set in and around one city which shows how the minds in it would operate, we see how the project would be secretly locked away from the world and see how the criminals will act in the shadows of abandoned locations.

Scene of the Movie – Corey military trained scenes.

That Moment That Annoyed Me – It does feel like we have a few too many characters at time.

Final Thoughts This is an action thriller that does have a lot of direction you wouldn’t normally see, it does keep us guessing despite having a couple of characters we don’t need to have.

Overall: Action film that goes down different paves.