Just when you thought Jason Statham might try something different, he naturally goes and proves you wrong. He’s not meant for Shakespeare, after all. So he sticks to what he knows best in his newest effort, Mechanic: Resurrection, the follow-up to 2011’s The Mechanic, itself a remake of the same-named 1972 Charles Bronson vehicle.
He again plays an assassin who makes his kills look like accidents. Having faked his death at the end of the first flick, he now resides in Rio de Janeiro. While there, he saves a woman (Jessica Alba) from a beating, only to have her snatched away by a British bad guy (Sam Hazeldine), who will kill her if Statham fails to off three targets via his signature method.
I can’t imagine anyone who saw the first installment felt it required a sequel; it was a solid but typical action flick, memorable mainly for Ben Foster’s nicely unhinged performance as Statham’s protege. But at least those who concocted Resurrection came up with a sound (if not unoriginal) excuse to force Statham’s hit man back into action.
And the action here proves surprisingly lively — courtesy of German director Dennis Gansel, making his American debut — with Statham outwitting goons on a tram, shooting it out with goons in a submarine dock, and twice infiltrating Hazeldine’s yacht. We even get some creativity with Statham’s hits — one involving an impregnable prison, one a very cool swimming pool.
It also helps that the action occurs in various countries, giving the proceedings a James Bond-like feel and allowing us to soak up some beautiful warm-weather scenery. The score by veteran composer Mark Isham helps further the Bondian vibe. (Be sure to check out the DVD featurette on Isham, in which we learn a little about him and about how to score an action film.)
Acting-wise, Statham administers his beatings, shootings and neck-breakings with typical verve, while Alba plays a damsel-in-distress who gets in some kicks of her own. But why, you may ask, did Tommy Lee Jones deign to appear (far too briefly, I might add) as one of Statham’s targets? Probably so he could have the most fun being a villain since Under Siege, that’s why. – [DVD]
DVD Release Date: 11/29/16