Thursday, 27 March 2008
Into the Sun
INTO THE SUN (2005)
Directed by: mink
Screenplay: Seagal & Joe Haplin
Starring: Steven Seagal, Matthew Davis & William Atherton
Seriously, what happened to Steven Seagal? By no means was he ever a great thesp and he wasn’t even the best action star, but he did use to put out entertaining and well crafted action films. Since the millennium, his straight to DVD flicks have been a mixed bag, some half decent (Mercenary for Justice) others downright awful (The Foreigner) but Into the Sun has to rank as his worst. Hardly an action film at all, it features such ineptitude in filmmaking you have to wonder what on earth went on behind the scenes. The film certainly looks good, like it had a budget, the Tokyo locations providing an exciting backdrop and Seagal himself is certainly less in the shadows and less doubled like he was in previous films. Hell, he even does his own fights in this one and is more trimmed down and in better shape like he was in his glory days. But, alas, Into the Sun makes no sense, has randomly connected scenes that go nowhere and very little action to recommend it.
The plot is some kind of mish-mash of Yakuza and Triad gangster rubbish, undercover CIA bollocks and a wince inducing Seagal romance. He may be trying to soften his side but his scenes of wooing his lady friend are just painful. In addition, Seagal speaks the movie partly in Japanese and English, which is all fine and well apart from most of the Japanese isn’t subtitled, making it impossible (unless you speak fluent Japanese) to decipher what is going on. Maybe it was just the DVD I watched, but why where the subtitles incomplete, just stopping and starting at will? Co-star Matthew Davis (Tigerland) just looks embarrassed and bewildered as the agent assigned to work with Seagal. The scene where the two talk in a bar while Seagal reminisces about growing up is car crash cinema at its best. Seagal is barely registering, throwing out random lines of dialogue while Davis looks like he is a million miles away not even reacting to him. And what the hell is the great William ‘Ghostbusters’ Atherton doing in this?
I hate to rag on a movie too much but there is little to be positive about here. There is some brief action, the best being Seagal taking out some thugs in the street but that’s about it. Things must have gone on in the making, as its hard to believe this was how the film was meant to end up. Seagal certainly turned things around (somewhat) with the likes of Renegade Justice and the upcoming Pistol Whipped, but Into the Sun is a long way from the great days Under Siege.