The last movie I saw from my main man Steven Seagal, which as always feels like days ago, was ‘The Keeper’ directed by Keoni Waxman who also directed this particular Steven Seagal joint ‘A Dangerous Man’. The good thing about ‘The Keeper’ in relation to most Steven Seagal movies is that it did have a narrative that was pretty tight but unlike most Steven Seagal movies, even his worst movies… and needless to say there are of few of those to choose from, that movie just didn’t have any kind of energy, at least in my opinion. It was just blah. So with this movie ‘A Dangerous Man’ I really didn’t hold out much hope for this to improve in such a short time but let me tell you, while ‘A Dangerous Man’ might’ve had its issues as a work of cinema, the least of its problems was a lack of energy. For real.
Before we get started just let me tell you that this movie is almost a parody of Steven Seagal movies. Seagal plays the character of Shane something or another, because they rarely use his name in this movie. Shane is an ex-special forces super badass. Seasoned Seagalogist know that Seagal is usually an ex-something or another, or he is an ex-prisoner sent up for something he didn’t do. Well in this movie he’s both. Some clown tried to jack his wife’s ride, Shane chases him away, the guy ends up dead and Shane is sent away for a long time. As it turns out THE MAN suppressed evidence in this case and Shane is released after six years of hard labor, in which this wife whose life he saved leaves his ass. Slut. Still Shane has glorious memories of this woman giving him nude seductive lap dances. Over and over again. It has been my experience, however, that the sex act works better when both parties are naked, not when one is naked and the other is dressed in black, sporting a turtleneck and a full leather overcoat. Just my experience.
Shane is out of jail for all of like a minute when he has to completely eviscerate a couple of carjackers. Two minutes out of jail Shane witnesses some Chinese mobsters kill some cop and while Shane has no love for the law he steps in and disintegrates one of these mobsters with his fists while the other runs away screaming like a bitch, even though he’s the one holding the Uzi.
Now the story gets kind of complicated. Shane frees a hottie with a world class set of lips from the trunk of these mobsters ride named Tia (Marlaina Mah), and he also frees a big bag of money from this trunk too. We’re not going to get into why Tia was in the trunk because it’s all total nonsense, but recognize that Tia’s problems include a bunch of dirty cops, some Chinese drug smugglers and a brutal Chinese Military National auspiciously named The Colonel (Byron Mann). There is also a young Russian car thief named Sergei (Jesse Hutch) whose life Shane saves during the mobster siege whose Russian Mob ties will come in handy later down the line.
The drug dealers want their money, the Chinese Nationals want the girl and the dirty cops want to rain hell. Standing in the way of the impending chaos is Shane and his new Russian ‘brother’ Vlad (Vitaly Kravchenko) who is grateful to Shane for saving his baby boys life. The Medical Examiner of this mythical town will be very, very busy for the next couple of months.
This is the most fun I’ve had watching a Steven Seagal movie in an awful long time. Is it a good movie? Well, that’s splitting hairs now isn’t it? ‘A Dangerous Man’ adheres to one of my personal rules of an action flick being ‘If you don’t know where you’re going, at least get there in a hurry’, and this one does just that. The story in this thing is so secondary that it’s almost as if they just threw something together to have something to halfway bridge the plethora of action sequences together. There might be fifty lines of dialog in the movie. Maybe. And the majority of this dialog consists of tough guys talking, telling folks to shut the F@#K up or informing you how you’re about to get F@#ked up. That’s pretty much the extent of this movie.
About Shane being an Ex-Special Forces badass. They never let you forget this. In fact they call him Ex-Special Forces Killing Machine more than they use his name. It’s like ‘Sergei… go left, Ex-Special Forces Killing Machine… your with me! Whenever a character asks Shane ‘Who are you?’, instead of saying ‘none of your business’ he usually responded with ‘I was an ex-special forces killing machine for fourteen years…’ and then whines about being thrown in jail followed by yet another flashback of his nude wife doing that lap dance. You can’t beat that with a stick.
When ‘The Colonel’ informs us about his top notch legion of supreme Chinese warriors, you might be excited about the battles to come. Don’t be. And when The Colonel, the most supreme of these supreme warriors and the Ex-Special Forces Killing Machine square off you might think you’re in for a true mano a mano battle royale. That makes me laugh. In true Seagal style, one straight kick to the chest resulting in one supreme warrior flying across the room like he was shot of a cannon and the fight is pretty much over. Byron Mann, who is a really good actor and grossly underused in most of the movies I’ve seen him in, should’ve asked Mr. Producer (Seagal) to at least allow him to him to land one punch.
My main complaint about this movie is that it would’ve been nice if Waxman has shined an extra light or two on the final two massive battle shootouts because it was mighty hard to make out who was killing who in those sequences. I could bitch about other stuff but I’m not doing it because this movie rose to a level of ridiculous parody that made me happy. You want art? Can’t help you. You want a 270 pound Aikido master / ex-special forces killing machine talking tough, looking like he’s in constant pain, show some fast hands in some extremely close quarters and not absorb a single punch in the process… this might be the best movie ever with those particular elements in it.