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Assassination Games
DVD disk
Oct 7, 2011 By: Chris Bumbray
Assassination Games order download
Director:
Ernie Barbarash

Actors:
Jean-Claude Van Damme
Scott Adkins

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
Roland Flint (Scott Adkins) is a former assassin seeking revenge against the gangster who put his wife in a coma. Meanwhile, an older rival assassin, Vincent Brazil (Jean-Claude Van Damme) is after the same prey, and the two form an alliance to take down their mutual target.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
I had modestly high expectations for ASSASSINATION GAMES. Arrow recently reviewed it, and dug the heck out of it- and more than any other critic, The Arrow knows action. I also think Scott Adkins has the makings of a terrific action star, and his last film, UNDISPUTED 3, was a rock-solid B-action flick.

However, if UNDISPUTED 3 was a B, then ASSASSINATION GAMES is a Z, as this is just another run-of-the-mill, shot in Eastern Europe cheapie. Thats really too bad for Adkins, and Van Damme, as both deserve better. Say what you will about The Muscles From Brussels, but unlike Steven Seagal, Van Dammes kept himself in shape, and seems to at least be trying, even if his recent DTV films arent up to par. His role in ASSASINATION GAMES is pretty one-note, with him playing yet another variation of Jean Renos iconic Leon from THE PROFESSIONAL. Hes a loner see, but we know hes sensitive because he collects art, and plays the violin. He also takes in an abused Russian prostitute a la KISS OF THE DRAGON/ HITMAN, so at least the director has SEEN his share of action flicks, even if he cant direct one.

For an action movie, this is surprisingly short on action. Adkins and Van Damme only have one short (semi-nifty) scrap with each other, and the rest of the action scenes are just quickie fights, or boring shootouts. The only thing creative here are the antique guns Van Damme uses in a face-off with Adkins early on. The ending is particularly disappointing, with it all culminating in a quick, boring slaughter that will have you yawning rather than whooping. All in all- its VERY boring stuff, chalk-full of intrigue thats not the slightest bit intriguing (that sometimes makes Adkins and Van Damme feel like supporting characters in their own film), and action that doesnt thrill.

THE EXTRAS
Not much here other than some useless deleted scenes and a bunch of trailers for a slew of DTV action films, including one called ARENA, starring Samuel L. Jackson that looks (unintentionally) hilarious, complete with the most-over-the-top acting Ive seen from Samuel L. since THE SPIRIT.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
Suffice to say, I did not enjoy ASSASSINATION GAMES, and its far below par for either Van Dame or Adkins, even as far as DTV actioners go. Theres far better films out there starring either gent, and Id advise you to give any of those a look rather than waste your time with this.
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-1
4:13PM on 10/07/2011
Agree. And what was with that colour washed out/yellow filter look of the movie? Damn, that looked horrible!
Agree. And what was with that colour washed out/yellow filter look of the movie? Damn, that looked horrible!
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3:50AM on 10/08/2011
That's a damn shame. I had moderate expectations for this film! With all the talent out there you'd think they'd be able to hire some hot young directors and writers to work on these DTV films. I agree about Van Damme, he really does seem to be trying, and if Adkins were better known people would be hyping him up as a possible Bond.
That's a damn shame. I had moderate expectations for this film! With all the talent out there you'd think they'd be able to hire some hot young directors and writers to work on these DTV films. I agree about Van Damme, he really does seem to be trying, and if Adkins were better known people would be hyping him up as a possible Bond.
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1:05PM on 10/08/2011
This flick is better than any direct to dvd VanDamme film and probably his best since Maximun risk. One star?? no way. It`s a decent B flick.
This flick is better than any direct to dvd VanDamme film and probably his best since Maximun risk. One star?? no way. It`s a decent B flick.
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12:50AM on 10/12/2011
I found this movie to be surprisingly good. Short on action, sure. But the style and cinematography were good, and I liked the characters.
I found this movie to be surprisingly good. Short on action, sure. But the style and cinematography were good, and I liked the characters.
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