Better with age, or perhaps just funnier
by Nathan Orians
Oct 22, 2010 | 2408 views | 0 0 comments | 52 52 recommendations | email to a friend | print
What happens to action stars as they begin to age? Jackie Chan started focusing on his “acting” and having younger stunt men step in for his vigorous fight scenes. Mel Gibson was an action star until he used his age as an excuse to go completely insane. Arnold Schwarzenegger went into politics (God help us). And, of course, there is always the Bruce Lee option…dying.

That doesn’t leave many routes for the age-impaired action star. It seems Bruce Willis doesn’t like any of those choices and wants to put another option on the table – old people still kicking butt in an action flick.


Even Mr. Willis has to admit that there is a certain level of humor involved in watching old people fight. With the movie “RED,” he made his first foray into the realm of senior citizen brawls quite comical.


Director Robert Schwentke pulled out a cast that was fit for the job. Many may not be physically fit, but they do fit the bill: old and willing to endure jokes made about their age.


Stepping into those roles were a few distinguished elderly actors. In the film, Morgan Freeman punches people in the face and shoots assailants. (Is there any role that guy won’t play?) John Malkovich blows things up and shoots people who call him old. (Honestly, I had no idea that Malkovich was still alive) Brian Cox and Helen Mirren rekindle an old romance and shoot people. (Cleary Mirren isn't looking to win an Oscar this year)


The message: while these individuals are retired, they are still extremely dangerous. In fact, the title “RED” is an acronym for Retired, Extremely Dangerous.


This movie is funny and worth seeing, but if you have an itch for an action movie that you really need to get scratched, this might not do it for you. There is definitely violence at the end, but overall this movie is more entertaining than exciting. It puts a new option on the table for the well-seasoned action star: become a parody of what you once were.

(Rating: 3/5)
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