The Hard Way
After learning his brother died on a mission in Romania, a former soldier teams up with two allies to hunt down a mysterious enemy and exact revenge.
Michael Jai White and Luke Goss are in "The Hard Way," an extremely predictable movie that just never gets the viewer engaged in the story. The White Character "Payne" learns his brother died on a mission in Romania, just when he his brother was expected to come home and be introduced to his young nephew who works at Payne's Bar in New York. Payne a former and very capable soldier teams up with allies Goss who plays "Mason" to hunt down the killer and get revenge in Romania.
Luke Goss, Michael Jai White and Randy Couture star in this lack luster and seemingly long, very boring and never hitting home under the coot ledge of director, Keoni Waxman, movie. Three capable actors directed in this sleepy disorganized manner that never showcases these awesome actors talents and capabilities. The Hard Way is not a spectacular movie in anyway and never enough action to keep fans entertained throughout.
Interesting elements abound, like the classic 1967 fast back Mustang Mason Drives slowly whenever shown, the Sniper Rifle and interesting handguns like the white handled presumably Ivory handled 1911 .45 pistol of Couture character Toro/ Briggs uses. The on-scene location / sets are also interesting and very elaborate.
Michael Jai White is at his best with his fight scenes as in real life he is black belt in 7 styles of Martial Arts and it shows. Having trained with Segal and Van Damn in the past White does not disappoint in his fighting scenes abilities. The director used poor fight choreographers for all the action scenes and show poorly, fight scenes are good, not great. Gratuitous violence abound as well. The scene where he takes on two mob type assailants who want to take over his New York bar is with disappointment and is touted as the highlight of the entire movie. This scene makes no sense actually and is leaving the viewer scratching their head and wondering, "huh?" The climactic fight scene is also foolish as well. Here Couture shoots blanks from his Ivory Handled 1911 .45 three instances and each time Payne gets up off the ground and then they have their final physical hand to hand combat. Simultaneously in another part of this location a knife fight between Goss one of Toro's last surviving bad guys is too long and foolish. Predictably Goss and White characters triumph with no injuries.
Plot Synopsis is a sad feature film that drags on and on with no solid story and little entertainment from start to finish. Many small old type plots with almost good newer longer plots which are miss matched and poorly organized. There are attempts to show character definition but never reaches that goal.
The actors shown here in this Netflix movie are good group, but the sleepy director just never delivers. Story is weak. The characterizations are long and unsubstantial with overall poor outcome. No car chase, no love interest that makes sense, the bad guy evil depiction/s wherever shown are laughable. Especially the pliers and tooth extraction routine.
The viewer just doesn't "feel it." Overall, The Hard Way is not worth watching and there will be disappointment to those that do. The plot synopsis is one action adventure movie that missed the mark despite the good actors and great location. - Martin Snytsheuvel