Reviewed By

Christopher Armstead
It's a sad day for us here at the FCU my friends.  Yes, we have known for a while that the singular character badass action flick was dying, because the current demographic, as it were, is far more interested in sparkly vampires, gay pirates, effeminate boy sorcerers and Nicholas Sparks movies.  Action movies really only peak the interest in this demographic if the hero is dressed in some form of tights or shiny metal.  'Bond' is a timeless franchise so it kind of doesn't count but 'Taken' did surprise while 'Taken 2' took us back down.  Nonetheless the demographic likes what they like, and we're good with that.  What choice do we have?  But our hope was with 'Bullet to the Head', starring an ancient but still ripped Sly Stallone and directed by veteran action director Walter Hill… maybe the stupid action movie has a chance.  Maybe the current demographic will wake up and see that watching one bad dude kill a lot of worst dudes is still viable.  Alas… no.  Apparently an episode of 'Glee' or 'Smash' or 'Idol' must've been running because 'Bullet to the Head' got sprayed with Demographic Repellent before it got released to theaters because you people stayed away from this one like it had the cooties.  And it's sad because 'Bullet to the Head' is about as perfect as a dumb ass action movie can get.  It's over.  I hear taps playing in the background. 

Sly narrates as hitman Jimmy Bobo, and when we catch up with Jimmy, he and his partner Louis (John Seda) just whacked some dude, as the job required.  There was a prostitute in the house but once Jimmy saw the tattoo on her back he decided to let her live.  Just now I figured out he let her live because the tattoo was one of the designs of his daughter Lisa (Sarah Shahi), meaning I guess Jimmy doesn't kill anybody his daughter has inked.  I guess.  Hopefully her parlor isn't that popular in New Orleans or Jimmy won't be doing too much more killing.  Unfortunately, after this murder gig, somebody sent a hitter to hit the hitters in the completely ruthless and oversized Mr. Keegan (Jason Momoa).  Louis didn't make it, Jimmy did, and now Jimmy is not a happy man. 
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Turns out this guy they killed was a dirty D.C. cop which introduces us to D.C. cop Taylor Kwon (Sun Kang) who jets down N.O. to investigate.  He puts a few things together, deduces Jimmy had something to do with hit, but all he wants is the info this dirty cop stole with his hope being that the hitman and the righteous cop can work together.  It's a pretty stupid plan but Taylor Kwon is a pretty stupid character.  I mean Taylor comes to town, talks to the N.O.P.D, and almost immediately a pair of N.O.P.D's finest try to kill his ass, until of course Jimmy saves him.  But yet he still maintains contact with the N.O.P.D., telling them his every move.  See what I mean?

Now Jimmy and Taylor become action movie buddies, Jimmy shooting people in the head and Taylor whining about how he shouldn't be doing that.  The reason Jimmy and his partner where deemed expendable has something to do with some super evil developer (Adewale Akinnouye-Agbaje) and his lawyer (Christian Slater) paying off senators for zoning rights or something.  Pretty standard evil developer stuff.  Of course, one could surmise that at this time in New Orleans that there is probably thousands upon thousands of miles of acreage available for little or no cost and moving people out of housing developments via paying off U.S. senators would be just plain stupid, but you know how evil land developers are.  We also get acquainted with Jimmy's beautiful daughter, and of course we all know you don't put a woman who looks like that in a movie like this unless this damsel finds herself in some serious distress.  Ugly chicks, for whatever reason, rarely find themselves in distress in these types of movies.  Possibly because ugly chicks don't exist in these kinds of movies. 

Ultimately, after a bunch more bullets to the head, chests and other orifices… not to mention the explosions, distressed damsels, car crashes and whatnot, we know that one extra large, extremely oppressive Samoan looking dude will be doing battle with a much smaller, much older, albeit cut like stone Italian looking dude.  And they will be doing this with axes.  C'mon now… does that have all kinds of awesome written all over it or what?

True enough, 'Bullet to the Head' is no bedrock of lucidity.  An evil land developer?  Really?  That's best we could do?  A cop partnering with a hired killer who doesn't want him to kill anybody?  The lunacy of killing the killers because you don't want them to talk, because we all know hitmen sing like birds when cornered.  They didn't even know why they killed the guy or who hired them, so what are they gonna to sing about?  A whole city where every single cop is dirty?  All of them?  Where we actually had to import an honest cop?  The love between this honest cop and the hot tattoo artist, even though they spent all of 35 seconds alone together?  And lastly, the pure insanity of insulting a hired killer, a man who is clearly insane and our bad guy fully acknowledges that this cat is clearly insane, then looking surprised when this lunatic turns on you after you insulted him.  How our bad guy managed to climb up the criminal ladder making bad decisions such as this is beyond me.

But are these issues with this movie?  Of course not.  This is the way these things are supposed to go.  Where a punch to the chest sounds like an explosion of thunder, where one can walk through town and blow up stuff and the cops never respond, and where we attend a swank, high brow dinner party and there are naked women walking around for absolutely no reason.  And director Walter Hill gives us all of that in addition to keeping his movie moving on rails going downhill, and delivering a title to the uncaring masses that is true to its name. 

But it's not 1986 anymore people, a time when the mere sight of a sparkly vampire would've gotten you beatup.  'Bullet to the Head' delivers completely on what it promises, and therein lays its biggest flaw.  Out of date, out of time, out of touch, but completely outstanding.  My heart breaks.
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