November 5th, 2021
STARRING: SCOTT EASTWOOD, KEVIN DURAND, FAMKE JANSSEN, MEL GIBSON, TYRESE GIBSON
DIRECTED BY: DAVID HACKL
AMovieGuy.com’s RATING: 2 ½ STARS (Out of 4)
This almost proves I’m not a stuck up film critic who can only appreciate period pieces or movies with pristine cinematography, when I’m giving a relatively positive review for the new action film Dangerous. It’s a bit of a throwback to 90’s movies, where the bad guys consist of a pack of goons, the good guy is not any saint himself, and the setting is a singular location to keep the action tight. Director David Hackl makes it work the best he can, both with a focused lead performance by Scott Eastwood, and a tight plot to make it work. There’s clearly a limited budget here, where little depth is given outside the main character, and still Dangerous makes for a thrilling enough escape of entertainment.
What I found cool about Dangerous is that it’s set on this remote Island off the coast of California, where Eastwood plays Dylan or “D” as everyone calls him, a veteran and now ex-convict on parole, trying to workout his social disorders. He’s seeing a psychiatrist (played by Mel Gibson- in a more comedic role) and trying to get his life back together, but then his brother dies, and a mystery man visits his house. Lucky for D his skills help him take out the hired bruiser, but now he knows of his brothers passing, sending him back home to the funeral. When he arrives, D is not welcomed, having burned bridges with his mother, and anyone else that may have been close to him. But there’s something fishy about his brothers death and when a tough mercenary (played by Kevin Durand) arrives with his pack of goons, it becomes a battle for D to protect his family, and anyone else on the island.
What I was not expecting about Dangerous is how it becomes a “last stand” style of story, where the people on the Island are the community, all living at this hotel, which was once a location used for a military site. The windows have steel plates covering them and when the mercenaries show up guns blazing, it’s soon revealed that something else is hiding underground. The plot becomes relatively simple, with Eastwood doing his best to set traps and take care of anyone trying to bust through a door. Meanwhile, the mercenaries that survive are trying to locate a missing treasure, with Durand barking orders, and revealing that he had a history with D’s brother.
Don’t think Dangerous is breaking any box office records or doing something memorable, it’s not much more than an acceptable escape. That being said, the face-off between Durand and Eastwood is fun to watch. The two pause for moments of monologuing and eventually fighting over the mass of riches found within the house. I was reminded of much better action films such as Commando, Die Hard, or Cliffhanger, when big action stars pulled in audiences to see a bunch of wild scenarios, and a lone hero to pull it all off.
I wouldn’t say Scott Eastwood is a new Schwarzenegger or Kevin Durand is pulling off a new Hans Gruber, it’s just nice to see a movie try, which comes from the mind of writer Christopher Borelli, and sturdy direction from David Hackle. Dangerous doesn’t do enough with co-stars Famke Janssen, Tyrese Gibson, and makes Mel Gibson of all people the comic relief, but it knows how to be an action film. If the low bar for direct to VOD movies is the shit that Bruce Willis is churning out, then Dangerous is showing much more respect to the audiences with the entertainment it’s selling. I didn’t mind it. Dangerous is just menacing enough.
DANGEROUS IS NOW PLAYING IN SELECT THEATERS AND AVAILABLE TO RENT ON DEMAND.
2 ½ STARS
Written by: Leo Brady