Bullet Points: House of the Rising Sun
Late one evening, after a long weekend of hosting guests at my small, yet comfortable home, I sat down to take in an action flick which was new and sounded somewhat entertaining. It was a film starring a former WWE Superstar and one that used elements from so many other excellent films like Casino and Goodfellas so I blindly jumped into it without reading any spoiler-free reviews and tested my luck. Unfortunately, as luck would have it, I made a bad choice. My expectations were crushed within minutes of the film starting and I fought back the desire to switch to a different movie. I still have no idea why it was called House of the Rising Sun….
The Gist: Ray just got out of the joint 6 months ago and has been working security at a shady club that doubles as an illegal casino and brothel but now he’s on the run after the club gets robbed and Ray is framed as the inside man. Now, Ray is using all of his old cop buddies and every trick in the book to find out who did it and clear his name before he goes down for good this time.
The Cast: Dave Bautista plays our hero who really isn’t a hero at all named Ray. His three-letter name is about as deep as his character gets as he quietly drives around for most of the movie in search of the men who framed him for the robbery. They mention several times that he was a “dirty cop” and that he did time but it’s never revealed why or why all of his old cop buddies are pissed at him after he clearly could have ratted them out too. Dave’s whisper acting is on par with Steven Segal for most of the movie. I kept having to turn up the volume to understand what the hell he was saying. Amy Smart plays Dave’s lady friend who is now bumping uglies with Tony, who trust me when I say, is easily the most noticeable twist bad guy in the history of inside man twists. Smart makes it rain on some strippers at the end but the rest of her character boils down to her unbelievable feelings for Dave. Seriously, she is pathetic.
People keep saying that he “looks like a cop” but I just don’t see it.
The Villain: Dominic Purcell plays Tony, which is a totally original name for a mobster guy. Being the real inside man is supposed to surprise you but if you have half a brain then you’ll figure it out almost immediately that his animosity towards Bautista is there for a reason. I can’t tell you what the other bosses names are but one guy is fat and looks white and his brother is supposed to be Danny Trejo so that already had me confused. Either way, this movie now has two strikes against it following the poor showing by the hero.
Dominic Purcell’s hair carries the brunt of the drama in this movie.
The Action: This movie had a chance to redeem itself with a couple of totally awesome action scenes and it failed worse than the early 90’s Buffalo Bills. If you have a pro wrestler as your main guy then you should probably give him a couple of opportunities to throw some dudes around or punch some guys in the face but the director apparently thought it was best to have him pussyfoot around and cower when a guy 40 lbs. lighter than him threatened him. Maybe the makers of this film should watch a Dwayne Johnson movie and see how it’s done. Hell, watch Suburban Commando! At least Hulk Hogan kicks serious ass in that. It pains me to say this but this is one of those movies that would fall under the “What Not to Watch” series here at Bulletproof Action.
My favorite “action” scene as Dave walks casually through the strip club at the beginning.
Take it Home:
- Danny Trejo Sighting: Damn straight he’s in this movie! And he gets a sex scene with a topless chick, so enjoy that.
- WTF: Despite Bautista being a WWE Superstar and being jacked as shit, he still fights like a 4th grader and is probably the weakest ex-cop/ex-con I’ve seen on film in a while.
- Finale: On one side, I was extremely disappointed in the ending of the film but on the other side I was just happy that it was over with.
- Hellbent for leather: This movie does do a good job of proving my leather jacket theory.
- Please stop: The music is pure garbage. It sounds like the 4 am block of rock music on a station that plays way too much Avenged Sevenfold.
- Bellybutton tattoos and turtle necks: True signs of being a badass.
- What is in a name?: I wish I knew…