Exit Wounds

Review Date:
Director: Andrzej Bartkowiak
Writer: Ed Horowitz, Richard D’Ovidio
Producers: Joel Silver, Dan Cracchiolo
Steven Seagal
Tom Arnold
A “Dirty Harry” type cop, who kicks ass in his job, but apparently doesn’t play by the rules, gets demoted to a rough part of town. Soon enough, the detective partners with a rookie cop and stumbles across a drug traffic ring. The next thing you know, they’re both neck up in police corruption, car chases, explosions, rat-tat-tats and Steven Seagal’s bigass chin!
Not bad, not bad at all. Surprisingly competent despite its many contrivances, this film is officially my first guilty pleasure of the year! And what does that mean? That means that as long as you don’t take this film too seriously, and basically take it for what it is, which is a typical action flick with comic relief spread throughout, you will more than likely be quite entertained by it all. And to top it all off, this movie is not a Steven Seagal movie at all! In fact, even though his tubby face is on the poster and his name above the credits, this film has a multitude of characters, all of which add a little spice to the film’s very basic ingredients. Yeah, sure the movie has its over-the-top moments, like the typical unappreciative head of the police demoting Seagal because he’s a cop who doesn’t play by the rules (even though he saved the vice-president’s life!). And its just “plain stupid” scenes, like when DMX walks into a car dealership, tosses the guy a bag full of cash and drives out with a car in less than three minutes (no paperwork…nothing!). But for me, a few of these goofy scenarios didn’t spoil the overall fun that I had watching this movie. And trust me…I was as surprised as anyone!! I don’t particularly like Steven Seagal, the man or the actor, and never thought twice about any of his movies, but this flick thankfully doesn’t focus on him, and that’s a definite plus.

DMX is the real show-stopper here, giving us plenty of on-screen charisma, some kick-ass moves and even a healthy dose of acting shop 101. You go, boy!! The rest of the cast also helped take the emphasis off ol’ chubface, and added some much needed humor into the mix as well, as both Tom Arnold and Anthony Anderson took the reigns and rode ’em whole in here. And speaking of those two, do not leave your seat at the end of the movie if you liked what they did in the flick, because there is another really humorous session between the two of them during the closing credits, that just put the icing on this fluffy cake. So what’s good about the movie? Well, it’s got lotsa gunplay, some wicked shots from the director, an actual story with surprises, despite its basic plot line of “crooked cops” which we’ve seen a thousand times, adrenalized action sequences, car chases and explosions and even some T&A (for the kids…hehe). The negatives include Seagal’s acting talent, the obvious dummies and stunt people used in some of the sequences (geeeez, are we really supposed to believe that Seagal could even ride a motorcycle, no less, do the things done in this movie?), the somewhat preposterous denouement once everything is out in the open, and oh, did I mention Seagal?

Anyway, I think the people who go into this movie expecting to see some solid action, a few laughs and an overall forgettable story, will likely be quite entertained by it all. If you’re looking to nail Seagal on his “same ol’, same ol” character and the basic generic tone of the movie, then you could do that, too. But for me, I decided to take it as it came and I honestly can’t say that the film wasn’t an enjoyable one, despite its many faults. So take off that mask of cynicism and enjoy this movie for what it is…a fun, good ol’ guilty pleasure of guns, explosions and Steven Seagal doing things with his body that we all know he can’t really do without his faithful stuntmen by his side! No substance here, folks…just good ol’ fashioned “guy stuff”!

(c) 2021 Berge Garabedian