Movies reviewed this week: Weaponized, Robo-Dog, Jackie and Long view: The Worthy (Starring: Samer al-Masry and Samer Ismail).
Guns, grenades and terrorism are all modern-day fears of today’s world. This well-crafted war action blockbuster unravels the plight of a damaged father Kyle Norris (Tom Sizemore), who is fighting for justice after his son’s death at the hands of terrorists.
With the attack calling for a new kind of warfare, military contractor Norris helps to create the biomechanical weapon SWAP, which can switch the consciousness of a soldier and a target – giving the soldier complete control of the target’s actions. On his return from the battlefield, veteran Jack Simon bursts out from a mass shooting, which results in the death of a senator. After stumbling upon the weapon, Detective Mitch Walker (Johnny Messner) illicitly interrogates Jack to help put him in the clear.
Director Timothy Woodward has clearly been influenced by classics like 1984 or Brave New World but this rather rushed-looking effort just isn’t in that league, to put it mildly.
A big letdown is a clichéd collection of characters, which includes an Asian computer whiz and an eccentric professor (Mickey Rourke).
However, despite a predictable plot, it offers a unique twist on war and its repercussions, which is welcome.
Review by Taylor Glover
Tyler (Michael Campion) is in the doldrums over the death of his beloved dog. His doting father Tom (Patrick Muldoon) can’t bear to see his son sad and withdrawn so he puts his skills to the test to create a robotic dog. After inventing a super battery for a robo-dog to exist, his dastardly ex-boss Mr Willis (Wallace Shawn) won’t stop until he claims the industry-changing invention. Cue lots of silly internecine strife in scenes dealing mainly with bad guys and romance. Revelling in clumsy special effects and a rather obvious plotline, director Jason Murphy may have had the small screen in mind with this effort. The kids might like it, though.
The most famous US First Lady of them all needs a powerhouse actress to give her a decent big-screen outing. And she certainly gets it in this, in the form of Oscar-winner Natalie Portman. Pablo Larrain’s film focuses on character rather than plot to emphasise the notion of loss, grief and motherhood as well as the personal and political changes after JFK’s death in 1963. Larrain cleverly captures the style and culture of the era by integrating scenes with original news footage and selecting an impeccable cast, which includes Peter Sarsgaard.
Direct from Dubai, this action-packed thriller is for daring moviegoers only. The daily battle to live in this dystopian world has eradicated the most basic of needs, the primary one of which is water. Havoc reigns over the last survivors of director Ali Mastafa’s post-apocalyptic world, when two mysterious characters appear at the gate of an abandoned aircraft factory. Suddenly, a thrilling game of cat-and-mouse begins and a blood bank builds. Mysterious and unforgiving deaths begin to occur and resources become scarce. The fight for survival becomes real. This one is for the thrill-seekers.
Oman release date: February 23