Reviewed by

Christopher Armstead

As ‘Soft Target’ opens there are two cops sitting in their car, bullshitting about whatever while on a stakeout.  One the cop mentions that all he has to do is hold on for the next year and then he’s off to retirement.  Okay, that guy is about to die.  His partner replies to the effect that he will always have his back.  We know he won’t because he’s going to be dead in a few minutes too.  This was pretty much the high point of ‘Soft Target’, waiting for these two cops to hurry up and die in a little DTV flick about two cops who are charged with protecting the veritable hooker with the heart of gold against evil mobsters and dirty cops.


The cast of ‘Soft Target’ is practically a hall of fame of low budget direct to video flicks stars with Don ‘The Dragon’ Wilson and Olivier Gruner as the leads.  Then they go ahead and toss in Fred ‘The Hammer’ Williamson, Gary Busey and Martin Cove for good measure.  If they could have tracked down Gary Daniels and Cynthia Rothrock, this would have been a cast for the ages!


Anyway, as the story goes, two other soon to be dead cops are protecting some mob dude at a safe house that looks suspiciously like a motel room in a seedy part of Hollywood, while our two car bound, soon to be dead cops are talking retirement.  The mob dude orders up a couple of whores, which of course is common practice at ‘safe houses’.  One of the whores, Angel (Diane Kruger), can’t go through with the whoring and runs into the bathroom crying.  Soon, some unseen dirty cop wastes the two safe house cops, while the retiring cops get wasted in the parking lot.  Mob boss Vick Nugetti Jr. (Michael Cavalieri) comes in and wastes one hooker, the mob dude, but doesn’t check the bathroom.  Angel the whore then grabs a key to some lock box and flees.

Well, police captain Rouse (Busey) needs to find the whore since she’s a witness to all these dead cops and all, and puts his two top cops on the case, by the book Danny Tyler (Wilson) and loose cannon Phil Yordan (Guner).  They hate each other too, by the way.  Eventually our heroes find Angel the whore and proceed to protecting her, though the leak in the department seems to know where they are at all times.  Add to that a little love brewing between Angel the whore and detective Danny Tyler, and we have quite the love story / slash thriller that DTV lovers, such as my self, can sink our teeth into.


‘Soft Target’ is just awful.  Simply awful.  But, truth be told, it’s only awful in three tiny elements.  That would be stars Don ‘The Dragon’ Wilson, Olivier Gruner, and Diane Kruger.  These three cats, who are probably wonderful, wonderful individuals, have literally set the trade of ‘acting’ back centuries.  There are scenes in the movie where Wilson and Gruner have to play off of each other, and the pauses in their speech and watching them trying to remember their lines while speaking is painful.  I’m not being figurative here.  Watching them actually made my left knee start hurting.  And then, I’m sure Gruner has the added pressure of trying to translate his lines to English before droning them out.  But the worst of it happens when they toss Diane Kruger into the mix.  Now we have three people, who can’t act worth a damn, trying to remember to say the right lines at the right times.  Folks, remembering your lines ain’t acting.  Now Diane Kruger is plenty hot.  No joke.  But I must assume when casting for a film like this, the producers scan the apps and see who checked the nudity waiver, and then they ask themselves out of the ones who signed the waiver, who’s the hottest.  No doubt someone probably chimed in with ‘Yo, but girlfriend can’t act dude!’  To which the power that is replied with ‘What’s your point?’


But though the beautiful Diane Kruger is thin, tall, tastefully surgically enhanced and an awful actress, she also portrays the worst movie prostitute of ALL-TIME.  Not once, but twice does her character of Angel the whore get buck ass naked with some dude, but refuses to go all the way.  Now I’m not saying anything, but generally speaking, that move doesn’t usually go over too well with folks enjoying non-whores.  Heaven forbid one actually pays their hard on sheckels, then have the prostitute say, on numerous occasions, that she ‘just can’t go through with it’.  It may be time to join the secretary pool sweetheart.


But ‘Soft Target’, as I have found with most movies, isn’t without entertainment value.  There’s nudity to be had, explosions abound, since Gruner and Wilson are in tow there are suspect hand to hand fight scenes aplenty and lots of killin’.  But since movies when boiled down are about actors acting, and since the main actors in this movie CAN’T act, what we have with ‘Soft Target’ is one suspect DTV movie.  I’m just saying.

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