2013 / Director. Kim Ji-Woon.
Arnold Schwarzenegger might carry a pensioners card and pay seniors rates to see his own movies, but I'm very happy to have him back in action. Now that he's old(er), he carries a Dirty Harry style 'give a fuck' attitude and he's a bad ass mofo to'boot. The Last Stand is his first starring role following his stint as the governator... and it's a belter. First things first... you got to leave your hang-ups at the door. This is a high voltage, fast paced, shoot-em-up action movie. It's not up for dissection and to point out it's foibles is to miss the point entirely. Just embrace the violence and treat it like a classic b-movie from the 70s. The story tells of a notorious and feared Mexican drug lord who escapes custody and makes for the Mexican border. With an endless recruit of lackeys, he breaks through road blocks at a breakneck pace, leaving behind a escalating body count. Arnie plays a small town sherif residing on the border... with the FBI lagging behind it's up to this cop and his band of fumbling deputies to stop the fugitive in his tracks. There is something different about this film that sets it apart. It has a strange Hollywood-meets-Indie feel about it and the breakneck pace of the story (city meets country) lends it a unique twang. This is also South Korean director Kim Ji-Woon's fist American movie and he brings with him a fresh approach to the action sequences. The action is well managed. It's stylish and unusual and offers a lot of new nuances that are rarely seen in typical Hollywood phooey. Arnie is great and he's supported by Johnny Knoxville, Luis Guzman and Forrest Whittaker... they're all good, too and there's a great little cameo from Harry Dean Stanton. Watch The Last Stand with the right frame of mind and you'll have a ball. I did.