Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Exit Wounds (2001)

Steven Seagal is a goodie but he’s the bad kind of goodie who always goes off on his own and busts heads before thinking of the repercussions. For example, saving the Vice President by throwing him into a river isn’t really what anyone wants to see in the newspapers. Which is why Seagal is sent to a different precinct, somewhere a bit rougher where he can go through the fun of being the new guy again. DMX is a baddie but he’s a good kind of baddie, perhaps. He doesn’t seem to want to kill anyone and just wants to be left to buy his drugs in peace. Perhaps. The two men find themselves in a situation that involves a LOT of heroin and a LOT of corrupt cops. Oh, and a lot of great supporting actors.

Exit Wounds is a lot of fun. The script has a lot of humour throughout and the action beats are numerous and consistently entertaining. Andrzej Bartkowiak directs with a great energy, grounding things so that each fight move packs a punch but also adding an occasional over the top move just to make things cool.

Seagal plays the same kind of character he plays in almost every movie, he’s a cop with an attitude who just wants to get the bad guys, but he also goes along with the humour and this puts him in a much better light than usual (especially in a scene where he’s sent along to an anger management group). DMX does okay onscreen but I can never seriously evaluate the acting of someone who has named themselves after some kind of computer cable (?!?!?). Elsewhere, we get treated to a fantastic and eclectic cast. Isaiah Washington, Michael Jai White, Anthony Anderson, Bill Duke, Jill Hennessy, Tom Arnold, Eva Mendes and the ever-brilliant Bruce McGill. Something to please everyone, surely.

With a lively soundtrack and some great exchanges between Seagal and whoever he deigns to share the screen with at the time, this film remains one of many simple pleasures. The plot throws in a few big twists that nobody should be shocked by but, first and foremost, it sets out to keep you entertained from beginning to end. And it absolutely succeeds.


  1. This is probably the last Seagal film I really enjoyed. To the point that I'd also give it a 7/10

  2. I remember thinking that Half Past Dead was tolerable, and have heard good things about Driven To Kill, but god help me with the next viewing lined up - Ticker :-(