Film Review: Bloodshot

Frances Winston reviews Vin Diesel’s latest film, Bloodshot

Directed by: David S. F. Wilson – Starring: Vin Diesel, Eiza González Sam Heughan, Toby Kebbell, Guy Pearce, Lamorne Morris, Talulah Riley

Vin Diesel takes a break from making yet another Fast and Furious movie (they must surely be on at least part 67 by now!) to star in this offering, based on the Valiant Comics superhero of the same name.

He plays the titular character, Ray Garrison, aka Bloodshot, who sees his wife tortured and murdered, before he too is killed. This would usually mark the end of a story, but in this case it is just the beginning, as he is brought back to life by a team of scientists led by Dr. Emil Harting (Pearce).

However, not only is he resurrected, he is also enhanced with enormous strength and healing powers, making him part of a new breed of super-soldier.

Initially remembering nothing of his past life, it is not long before the memories come flooding back, and he attempts to track down his wife’s killer to extract revenge. But it seems that nothing is quite as it seems, and he may need to look elsewhere to find the real bad guy.

Diesel gets plenty of opportunity to flex his muscles here, and indulge in some old-school action. Bloodshot is rough and ready, and not afraid to use his fists, and Diesel seems to relish in it.

There are plenty of huge scenes where he gets to strut his stuff, and these should satisfy fans. Unfortunately, he fails to connect with the emotional arc of the story (yes there is one – even in an action/superhero film). The scenes with Garrison and his wife are pretty cringeworthy, and not helped by some seriously clichéd dialogue.

Pearce is wasted. A fine actor, he totally dials it in here, and hams it up to the nth degree. That said, even at his worst he still outshines his co-stars (no offence to them, but the cream always rises).

Safe to say this is action by numbers, from the script through to the characters through to the fight-scenes. The effects are OK, and if this wasn’t a superhero movie, that would be enough. However, people are now so used to seeing absolutely seamless CGI and effects in the MCU and DCEU, that they do seem somewhat lacking. Actually if I didn’t know this was a contemporary film, I would have said it was made several years ago based on the effects.

Despite the convoluted plot and the cheesy dialogue, this should keep Diesel fans happy, until another Fast And Furious lands. It is an action thriller in the old-school vein – it actually reminded me of Robocop in parts – that will definitely entertain fans of the genre.

If you’re not an action fan, you might find this a bit mediocre. It is very much aiming for its target audience, and won’t necessarily appeal to anyone who isn’t already a fan, but if you want 109 minutes of unpretentious superhero shenanigans, this will do the job.

In Cinemas Now!

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