Wednesday, 23 April 2008

Rage




RAGE (1996)


Directed by: Joseph Merhi
Action Director: Spiro Razatos
Screenplay: Joseph John Barmettler & Jacobson Hart
Starring: Gary Daniels, Jillian McWhirter & Kenneth Tiger

Rage is one of Gary Daniels best action films. Made at a time when PM Entertainment were at the top of their game, and the video stores were awash with action orientated material, Rage is about as pure as action films get. Once this bad boy starts it rarely lets up and while the premise and what plot there is, is completely bonkers, the action scenes still deliver and are some of the best to come out of a low budget movie. The story takes all of five minutes to set up with Daniels’ character being kidnapped, injected with some kind of super serum by some dodgy government organization before he goes on the run with the government, police force and the media all in tow.



Eschewing any kind of plot and character development, Rage just keeps on giving and giving in the action department. Daniels cuts a fine hero and there is even some attempt to address the callousness of the media, but really all Rage wants to do is cram in as many eye searing set pieces as possible. Watching the action sequences now, one realizes how ludicrous they are. In this cynical day and age nothing can be seen as suspension of belief, but when Rage was released over ten years ago, action films could do what ever they wanted. Yeah, the fact that a trained police man with a high powered rifle is only a few feet away from Daniels character, who is hanging off a skyscraper with nothing but his fingers, is ridiculous but the stunts involved are still amazing. Watch stunt men fall tens of storeys, swing onto helicopters and leap off gas tankers ploughing into school buses: all done for real. The action may be over the top but the stunts are all real, making Rage a worthy viewing for any action fan. Spiro Razatos, stunt guy extraordinaire, coordinates some dazzling set pieces and vehicular mayhem and even bookends the flick with two adrenalin pumping shootouts that show Daniels zipping through the with double Uzi’s, shattering all glass in sight. Fun stuff.

Yeah, Rage is as mad as a bag of snails but it’s a great, pure action film. Non stop Uzi fire, tanker smashing, falling from helicopters (and surviving), car flipping, and glass shattering chaos that will leave you with a big, broad smile on your face.



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