ST. LOUIS — The tagline for the new Vin Diesel film, "Bloodshot," simply reads: "You don't need a past to have a future." Sometimes, you don't need a comic book to make a good movie. If you make a half-baked, PG-13 version of one, it'll be a piece of garbage 100% of the time.
This movie is pure garbage. Calling it flawed would be an insult to better Diesel vehicles like "Pitch Black" and "Find Me Guilty." This is a movie that should never have existed. It's not a good sign when four different sets of hands have a piece of the story/script. It's also a very bad sign when Metacritic doesn't even register a score for the movie. Right now, it's N/A aka not available. Most people didn't even bother to sneeze, much less write an article, about whether or not to to see this movie.
I'll break the mold and put it in writing because that's the kind of guy I am. There's nothing good about this movie. You've seen it before and much better. Steven Seagal's "Hard to Kill" comes to mind. In "A Man Apart," Diesel also played a form of law enforcement who loses his wife and nearly his own life from very bad men and goes on the war path for revenge. "Bloodshot" is no different, pitting Diesel as the dead solider who lost his wife and is re-programmed as a super soldier. Meh, cough, sigh. There's nothing exciting or fresh about this movie.
Somehow, Guy Pearce signed onto this movie, the directorial debut of Dave Wilson, a visual effects guy getting to ride shotgun here. The usually delightful Eiza Gonzalez has a mundane part here, playing the woman who brings back the righteousness in Diesel's rebuilt body with the same old tender heart. Other actors show up, trying to punch or kill Diesel (again), usually failing. Toby Kebbell, who can so effective in a supporting role, dazzles with a dance sequence at the start of the film-but then disappears.
A late plot twist can be seen coming from a mile away and it only extend the disdain for a movie that never really tried to be something different. It's overcooked frozen pizza here, folks. The kind of film you applaud yourself for seeing through and not finding a credible thing to say about it.
You may not need a past to have a future, but you need a movie with some life to create a good time in a theater.
It begins and ends with Diesel. He's the culprit here. The 52-year-old needs to make better choices. He makes a "Fast & Furious" movie every 2-3 years (#9 just got pushed back a year), but should use the salary and power position from that to create more independently-produced and far juicier content. "Bloodshot" can't even manage to be better than "Chronicles of Riddick," or merely passable like "The Last Witch Hunter." He's merely phoning it in, milking the action star mystique for all that it's worth. I wish he'd kick it old school with a "Boiler Room" type role, but the man's ego is about as large as the hot air contained in this movie.
Avoid it. This is not a Redbox pickup, more like a straight-up turn-down service. Just scroll on past it, looking for something with a pulse.
Here's the thing. When a film is bad and doesn't do its job at all, a critic should be able to eviscerate it without qualms. Everyone on the film got paid already, so what's the cuddling all about? You either make a good film or I forget it, but please don't make a terrible one.
I saw "Bloodshot" so you didn't have to. You're welcome.
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