The Last Stand
Bruce Willis said it best in The Expendables 2, when Arnold says “I’ll be back.”
Bruce retorts, “You’ve been back enough.”
Well old Arnold comes back one too many times in “The Last Stand,” a Jean-Claude Van Dame level actioneer unbefitting of the Governator.
Schwarzenegger stars as a former LAPD cop who left town after a bust went bad. Now he’s the ridiculously overqualified sheriff of a sleepy little border town called Sommerton. But soon a drug kingpin escapes from an FBI convoy, and he’s headed straight for Arnold’s front door in a 200 mile per hour supercar on his way over the border to Mexico.
The cast is absurdly stocked with talent for such a woebegone enterprise as this, including Forrest (What have I done with my career since that Oscar?) Whitaker, Luis Guzman, and Harry Dean Stanton.
And Korean action director Kim ji-Woon shows some real pizazz behind the camera, making this Arnold vehicle look better than it has a right to. The film is a defiantly old fashioned shoot em up, but the aging horse it rode in on can’t quite carry the load. In the early going anyway, the scenes that work best are the ones without Arnold’s hulking frame dominating the conversation. In the end, all his camera tricks don’t amount to much more than putting lipstick on a pig.
Slower, fatter, and looking every bit of his 65 years, this was supposed to help Arnold turn back time to a day when all he had to do was grimace with a big gun to attract audiences. But his one-liners just aren’t what they used to be. And the more he tries to pretend things haven’t changed a bit, the more glaring the differences become.