Dearest Blog: With this weekend's promising new releases opening nowhere near me, yesterday it was off to Marquee Cinemas for the...um...less-than-promising Hardcore Henry. Spoiler level here will be mild, nothing you wouldn't know from the trailers.
A man awakes in a laboratory to discover he's acquired a bunch of robot parts, but lost his memory.
Dear Reader(s), I'ma be straight with ya: With time to spare between halves of yesterday's double-feature, I stepped out of Harcore Henry, sat in the hallway, and wrote something akin to Spinal Tap's infamous "S**t Sandwich" review. However, the well-stated enthusiasm of one of my cinema buddies caused me to give the movie some additional thought, and, with thanks to Paul at Marquee, here's a more considered opinion.
Hardcore Henry is quite unique. Shown entirely through Henry's eyes, the viewer sees all the wiggly-jiggly action in the first person. While that's not always a great choice for your viewing enjoyment (and thank heavens it's not in 3D!), the filmmakers get full marks for commitment and attention to detail. Every bit looks entirely authentic.
Sharlto Copley is his usual brilliant self, changing personalities like I change my socks. Like Sebastian Stan, Copley is a fantastic actor who usually deserves better than the projects he or his agent chooses, but, on the plus side, even a bad movie is so much better for having him. The action sequences are very well-choreographed, and the film is also smart enough not to wear out its welcome, clocking in at a quick hour and a half.
Now, the bad news: the violence and portrayal of women in Hardcore Henry are straight out of a teenage boy's dream. Even I--Number-One Expendables Fan--have to admit that the pointless chaos wears thin pretty quickly. The picture’s clearly more interested in grabbing your attention with something weird or shocking than keeping it with a well-thought-out story; the plot is riddled with holes and bizarre moments that make no sense...even in the context of something that makes so little sense overall.
Minus anything more substantial underlying it, the incessant brutality is a lot to take, and the non-stop action can't save the movie from being a bit of a bore.
Hardcore Henry runs 96 minutes and is rated R for "non-stop bloody brutal violence and mayhem, language throughout, sexual content/nudity, and drug use."
Harcore Henry certainly isn't everyone's cup of tea, but, if you're looking for something well and truly different at the movies, it might just be for you. Of a possible nine Weasleys, Hardcore Henry gets three.
Until next time...