Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Film Review: Universal Soldier Regeneration (2009)

Universal Soldier: Regeneration (Review)
United States/2009
Netflix Streaming: No
Amazon Prime: No

"...blend booming explosions, blazing shootouts, and vicious fistfights."

After kidnapping the Ukainian prime minister's son and daughter, a terrorist group holds them hostage in a Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant until their comrades are released. It is soon revealed that the terrorist have their hands on a lethal weapon -- a Next-Generation Universal Soldier (Andrei Arlovski). After failed attempts at neutralizing the target and saving the hostages, one of the original and best UniSol is rearmed -- Luc Deveraux (Jean-Claude Van Damme).

Universal Soldier: Regeneration has a simple story. In fact, there isn't much I can add due to the lack of significant events; the story lacks creativity and innovation, despite the unique concept. It follows an easily identifiable formula; start the mission, fail, try a different approach, fail, wait for Luc Deveraux, train and reactivate, and finish with a huge action sequence. If you're looking for a deep, character-driven story... look elsewhere. This story is all about the action, and I'm okay with that.

The film starts with a great kidnap-chase sequence. An edge-of-your-seat car chase -- dodging, and often driving through, other cars while exchanging fire with other vehicles. It continues into several missions which blend booming explosions, blazing shootouts, and vicious fistfights. Luc Deveraux takes the lead during the final act with a superbly choreographed action sequence, which is complimented by the slick camerawork. In fact, the last 30 minutes of the film consists of pure action. Its safe to say: this is a fantastic all-out action film.

Andrei Arlovski is good in this film, although his character isn't really demanding; his presence is intimidating and he performs his action sequences adequately. Jean-Claude Van Damme has brief appearances throughout, and finally takes the lead during the final act; his performance is great, as are his action sequences. Dolph Lundgren briefly appears -- less than 15 minutes or so -- and delivers a great performance, as well. The action is superbly choreographed, the music is well-fitted, the choreography is great, and the cinematography is solid. John Hyams is great as the director, although a better story would've been beneficial.

Overall, Universal Soldier: Regeneration is a great action film; the story is nothing new, and it never strives to be more, but the action sequences are superb, the film is technically exceptional, and the pacing is fast -- a pure action film that will easily kill a night.

Score: 8/10
Parental Guide: Strong violence and gore.

No comments:

Post a Comment