I'm not 100% sure but I think I maybe doing a first for the site, in that i'm reviewing a movie that is still in theaters. However what is also interesting is that I finally realize my stance on Jet Li. Which is to only watch his Hong Kong stuff. Outside the decent Kiss Of The Dragon and the guilty pleasure Cradle 2 The Grave, all of Jet Li's American movies are disasters. Indeed Unleashed despite people will tell you is among his most unintentionally hilarious. Romeo Must Die, a boring crapfest. The One, the most painful thing known to man. (Edging out a kidney stone.) But Jet Li showed once again that he could make some serious kick ass pics such as Hero and Fearless. However his return to the west would mark what is ultimately his career end. War isn't awful, but given the box office stats and the distribution which is sort of a second rate Universal Soldier, in terms of pitting Jason Statham and Jet Li together as they have to kick each other's asses. However where as Universal Soldier had a final fight scene that delivered a long battle, War's battle is over before it starts.
The plot for what it's worth is sort of like Yojimbo with Jet Li as some kind of an assassin who pits a Chinese family against a Japanese family and does this for reasons unknown to all. Also Jason Statham is hunting Jet Li cause of the death of his partner and there are some twists but overall nothing makes sense so i'm not going to get into it. (I don't get paid anyway and wasting time on half assed bullshit is the immortal Charles Bronson's job!) So what we have is a movie that leaves no impression at all.
What I learned is that Jet Li is a dreadful actor whenever he leaves Hong Kong. As I look at his performances (Okay he was alright in Kiss Of The Dragon) he has yet to give a performance better than Jean-Claude Van Damme and when he got his feet wet in the business, the buffoons in Hollywood decided to give us Jet Li's martial artistry mixed with the dumbest Matrix rip off CGI ever. The result was painful to say the least and because of this destructive trend, we ended up CGIing Li so much that he got too old to do the moves required for this movie. In other words where as the action fan group get to say they enjoyed Van Damme before he got old, Seagal before he got fat, Lundgren before he got so thin, Chan before the stunt related injuries caught up with him. All we have to remember Li by is his matrixed and roles where he was too old. (Least in his American stuff.) War should be really fun-bad, War should really kick ass and finally War should take no prisoners. It doesn't.
Indeed this review is hard to write cause it left no impression on me. It's so mediocre that I can barely write about it and I saw it just a couple days ago. War is TV filler and little else. Jet Li is a terrible actor in the U.S but adequate in Hong Kong. Jason Statham is British and trying to be an action star, insert your laughs here and basically I have little else to say about the movie. Outside of the fact that Devin Aoki was kinda fuckable. Also I think I now know why the genre is such on hard times, its because were turning to United Kingdom (of gayness) for action heroes (Statham and Clive Owen) when we should be trying to find someone actually masculine. You know like someone from Belgium, Sweden,China or *GASP* America?
Hamlin Grade: 3
-Board certified professional safety dancer