Thursday, September 27, 2012

Ponytail Pain: Urban Justice

Are you serious, Seagal?  Today's film is Urban Justice and...just think about that for a second.  A film called Urban Justice...starring Steven Seagal.  Shouldn't this be featuring Mario Van Peebles, Coolio or Ice Cube? Was there anyone else more qualified for this?  Not even taking into account Seagal's laziness, growing waistline and whiteness, he's an Akido Expert who went to Japan to get famous.  Does anything about that scream 'Urban' to you?  Regardless, this is a real movie from 2007, so I'm going to review it.  The plot involves Seagal tracking down his son's killer.  Is it the corrupt cop?  Is it the gang of thugs?  Is it Eddie Griffin?  Yes, he's in this movie too.  What's next- Danny Trejo?  Oh, he is in this movie...kind of.  This movie is a weird mess, but I'll get through it for you.  To find out how 'urban' Seagal can be, read on...
This is Seagal's son.  Short of being Chuck Norris' girlfriend, there is no quicker route to death.  As a bonus, he really really loves his wife.
Yeah, he dies.

Holy shit though- that's a lot of blood!  How is that even possible?!?!?
Seagal shows up and is sad, despite sharing zero scenes with his 'son.'  Gee, maybe if you didn't hire such a bitter ass to be your star, you could have shot scenes like that.

Speaking of which, I could swear that this same funeral footage is in Pistol Whipped.  That or these Seagal films are so generic that they just blend together.
Seagal goes right to the Police- in what appears to be the same Station from Whipped as well- and just asserts his authority as, you guessed it, a Secret Agent.  THINK OF A NEW CHARACTER!!!
Oh and that shadow thing- it still doesn't work like you think it does.  Kudos for trying though.
Danny Trejo is in this movie.  His role- being a guy who says that he didn't kill Seagal's son.

Seriously, that's it.  Don't worry though, they replay part of this scene later, so it's like he has two scenes!
Eddie Griffin is a 'gangsta.'  He works with the corrupt cop, but doesn't really do much else.  I'd say that he's underutilized...but he's Eddie Griffin.
The final battle between Seagal and the corrupt cop- which also happened in Whipped...I'm just saying- is shot in the dark.  Wow- that's a new low for you, Seagal.

Max Havoc- you have been topped!
After killing the Cop, Seagal lets Eddie Griffin live, since he didn't kill his son.  You know, he did kill a bunch of other people and...oh, never mind.  The End.
Even in the 'hood, Seagal films are crap.  What are the good parts?  Seeing people beat up is always fun.  That's pretty much it.  The bad parts- there are a lot more of those.  Seagal's character is just kind of an asshole, save for maybe two scenes.  In one scene, he sends his sympathies to the widow of his son.  Mind you, he does this over the phone and it never comes up again, but it should count.  In the other, he saves his snitch from random white thugs.  The thing is that scene has no context and he really has no motivation for doing any of this, save for his selfish ones.  So, in summary, his character is awful.  The action scenes are pretty bad, consisting of one-sided beat-downs or quick shoot-outs.  Seagal never ever has a real rival in his films and this doesn't change here.  The action is, as noted before, is shot in so much darkness that it is hard to enjoy.  Even the revenge beat-down is barely visible, taking all of the teeth out of it.  The only action scene that's fun(ny) to watch is when the thugs attack his apartment.  They keep popping in through the same door and keep getting shot.  It's bad First-Person Shooter logic...but in real life!  This movie has some funny moments, but it is so dark (literally and figuratively) that it ruins the whole thing.  Take us away, super-duper shadows...
Next up, a film that I was interested in...until I realized that it was a Full Moon film.  All of a sudden, I knew that I was in for something strange!  Stay tuned...

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