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Marked for Death More at IMDbPro »

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Good action movie

Author: Shahram-2 from London, England
26 June 2000

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

When you watch a movie like this you might think: "Well why is Seagal so famous, anyone could do it" But Steven Seagal has charisma. Just try to imagine anyone else as the main character, it wouldn't work as well.

Sure there are some things that don't make sense, like the fact that Seagal and friends can destroy half a shopping center without any police interfierence, but mindless, cheesy things like that are what make the movie good.

Talking about Cheese, this movie actually doesn't have that much of the cheesiness factor you will see in so many other action movies. The emotional scenes may not work for some people but at least they put good effort into it.

The acting in this one is decent with Seagal playing a tough, rough retired cop, John Hatcher, who wants to get revenge on this Jamaican gang once they try to brutally murder his familly. Pretty typical story that they try to make different.

But hey forget about the acting, or the story folks, it's just an excuse for the good action. And let me tell you you're not gonna get any more bang for your buck than in this one. Seagal delivers again, kicking @ss and looking damn good doing it. I wouldn't consider the action very extreme but compared to other action movies I suppose there is alot of blood and gore, which is good for the action fan. You've got the love the ultra violent, the bone crunching action, just the way Seagal just breaks everyones bones with such ease. I would have like more violence (I can never get enough) and Seagal to take more punches, but hey that's okay, still very entertaining.

The first few minutes in Mexico or wherever was a very good start, it almost takes you into another world. A world of danger and intrigue.

And it's not as typical as most other action movies, especially if you compare it to Chuck Norris and Van Damme. The writers actually try to be creative. The twist at the end was surprising and the final showdown was probably the best of the whole movie. I love the line Seagal says after finishing the job. If you haven't seen the movie the line will probably be a spoiler so don't read the next line

Something like, "Let's hope they're not triplets" That one had me laughing my head off.

The faults with this movie? As I said, I would have liked even more action and more violence, but that's just me. I would have liked it if they would have re-shot some of short sequences where Seagal's acting wasn't at its best, like in the Confession in the Church. It would have also been better if they would have actually tried to freak out the audience a bit with the voodoo, but what makes these movies so good is that they're mindless and have some little faults like the ones I mentioned. If all the women didn't right away want Seagal's character, hey it wouldn't be a Steven Seagal movie.

If I had to rate the movie I would give it 7 out of 10. Not very high but I didn't expect this to be a masterpiece, never expect that in an action movie, so I liked it.

So watch it and enjoy the entertainment. Enjoy the action and anything else you can get out of this one. It's an escapist movie and it succeeds at entertaining you and entering you into the world of John Hatcher.

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0 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Seagal`s best!!

Author: action-6 from Froland, Norway
19 December 1999

Marked For Death is with no doubt Steven Seagal`s best movie! Steven plays John Hatcher, a cop who retires after a violent mission in Bangkok. He returns to his childhood-town to visit his family. The society in the town is not how it used to be, as drug-dealers from Jamaica terrorize the neighbourhood. John and a friend of his visit a local bar, when some of the drug-dealers enter and shoot a lot of people. John interfeers and is therefore marked for death. Afterwards, the drugdealers try to kill John`s family, which really pi#¤es him off. John gets very angry and decides to take down the whole organization by himself. Marked For Death is a true action-classic, and the best movie of Steven Seagal. The actionscenes are many, very cool, the most violent and Seagal really shows his best fighting scenes in this movie. Buy it!!!!!!! 10/10

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1 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Seagal vs. freaky Jamaican crackheads…

Author: Michael DeZubiria ( from Luoyang, China
31 January 2009

So Seagal plays a DEA detective named John Hatcher who lost his partner on a drug investigation into, surprise surprise, Colombia! Not to brag or anything, but my father was born and raised in Colombia (hence my last name), and now he's a doctor in California, so no matter what the movies would have you believe, there are some things other than drug dealers and cocaine that come out of Colombia!

At any rate, in a drug bust gone bad, Hatcher loses his partner and accidentally kills a naked Colombian prostitute, inspiring him to go to confession, somewhere that I have never seen him go before in any of his movies, before or since. It was actually pretty interesting. Seagal has a tendency to come off as almost asexual the way he never gets much involved with women other than as a plot device and the way the occasional seduction attempt, whether by a stripper or by a lover, never piques the slightest bit of interest from him. He's all get-the- bad-guys all the time.

But in the confession booth, he confesses to having lied, sold drugs, falsified evidence, and even slept with informants in order to get the information he needed to put the bad guys behind bars (I hope I'm not getting in trouble with God by telling you this…). The priest tells him to go to his family, so he decides it's time to retire from the force.

The next third of the movie is an exercise in the paper-thin characterization characteristic of Seagal's films. Marked For Death is the story of Seagal against a band of mystic Jamaican drug dealers, and these guys have no discretions about pushing their products in broad daylight.

Hatcher goes back to visit his old high school coach, Max (a minimal effort by Keith David), and right in the middle of practice there are some of these dread-locked crackheads sitting right there in the bleachers peddling crack to some bookworm-looking high school girls.

Maybe I just had a sheltered experience in high school, but I didn't know crack dealers and crackheads hung out AT SCHOOL in the MIDDLE OF THE DAY. At any rate, it's not long before Hatcher learns how evil these guys are. They're not just peddling crack to high school kids, but the coach has been losing football players regularly to their drugs, they engage in smartass stare-downs with Max, and since that's not enough, his 13-year-old niece died in their crackhouse.

Ah, OK. We get the picture. I'm sure they also torture puppies and beat up old women, and maybe steal candy from children too, just for good measure. Is it really this hard to establish who the bad guys are? 13-year-old niece died in their crackhouse. Wow.

Anyway. Not only does the movie not know how to develop villains without resorting to what basically boils down to movie name-calling, where evil deeds are shallowly assigned to them through dialogue, but they also don't know how they should act.

The leader of the drug dealers, is named Screwface, and I suppose that alone should tell you something about the kind of movie this is. Screwface is a cartoonish Jamaican man with these bright, bizarrely green eyes, which I am guess must be an important part of his character because he spends a good majority of his screen time with his eyes half bulging out of his head. His favorite means of intimidation is to scream really loud in his wildly overblown Jamaican accent with his face quite literally less than an inch away from whoever he's yelling at. This guy likes to get so into guys' faces that he has to turn his head to the side so their noses don't touch. All I could think about was how the poor guys would deal with his breath.

Man, they do not want you to forget that these guys are Jamaican, by the way. Their accents are so exaggerated and overblown that for most of the movie it's nearly impossible to understand them. Not that it matters. It doesn't matter what they're saying, all you need to know is that everything that comes out of their mouths is some kind of evil drug-related thing, they're just the psychos that peddle drugs and kill people. The movie must have been a huge hit in Jamaica!

My biggest problem with the movie is that the theatrics, particularly of the bad guys, as I've described, are spectacularly goofy, even for a Seagal film. They are so cartoonish and weird that it's impossible to take them as anything other than a goofball b-movie creation, something slapped together to provide fodder to whom Seagal can distribute his characteristic brand of smack-down retribution.

But there is also a bizarre kind of mysticism in the movie that just makes it all come off as weird. For example, a mystic, I guess you would call her, at one point puts some kind of curse on Screwface by (if I remember correctly) spitting mouthfuls of Bacardi onto a live rooster that's hanging upside down before beheading it and dripping its blood onto a picture of Screwface. Hmm. Interesting.

Sadly, it's this same woman that warns Hatcher that his family has been "marked for death" by these people, meaning they've got some voodoo hex on them. Not to belittle anyone, but if I was told that my family had been cursed by people like that, I would just laugh at it. Hatcher doesn't strike me as the kind of guy to take much stock in freaky voodoo curses!

But the set-up, as you can see, is pretty standard for a Seagal film. Unique villains, I guess you could say, although not very impressive. Definitely the weirdest film of Seagal's early career…

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2 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Poor acting, some good Aikido fight scenes

Author: Lost_cow from Canada
28 May 1999

Well, if you're after a decent martial arts bang'em up and not expecting a masterpiece of thespian theater this is a pretty decent movie.

If like many Steven Seagal fans what you're looking for is Sensei Seagal in action, this is (IMHO) one of his better pieces. The shopping centre does have some nice Aikido.

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0 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

dumb and bloody, but fun

Author: Dullahan from Chicago, IL
17 August 1998

Steven Seagal stars in this tale of a cynical cop looking to bust a Jamaican drug lord. Although I loved the fights, this movie seriously leaves something to be desired. There was basically zero plot (which was what I expected), but let's face it, Seagal can't act. The guy is almost painful to watch, especially when there's a "serious" moment between him and any family members. And look out for a hopelessly bizarre plot twist near the end that makes absolutely no sense at all...

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1 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Screwface? More like stoneface.

Author: Tics ( from nowhere
2 March 2001

Steven Seagal and fellow actioneér Jean Claude Van Damme has seriuos problems, the film makers try so hard to make them look tough that in the end thay both look stupid. Now they are not anyway near good acting but while Van Damme makes fun of himself Seagal never can. He keeps up his old stoneface look and hisses at the badguys while trying to look mean and cool. Both Van Damme and Seagal have about two movies worth watching, in Van Dammes case it's Bloodsport and Double Team and with Seagal it's Above the law and Under Siege. Marked for Death was made after Above the law and Hard to kill and you can tie together these three and Out for justice because they all have much in common. Seagal plays cops in all of them but in two he is something else also. They all show Seagal coming into places where he meets some badguys and he kicks their ass one by one, they don't have any real humour and no real plot, stupid dialogue and old stoneface showing a disturbing talent for violence. In this movie DEA agent Hatcher (Seagal) has returned from a drugbust gone bad in South America and he tries to seek up his family and friends to live a quite life but he soon has to show his mean side once more when Jamaican drugdealers are interefered in a massacre by the stoneface and craves revenge against Hatchers family and he himself becomes marked for death (but you would expect it that it's the drugdealers that are marked for death in this case). Hatcher hunts them down and kills them in various violent acts and then turns his path towards Jamaica for a showdown with the badguys leader Screwface (with an overacted performance by Basil Wallace). But this isn´t really the end but who cares because in the end everyone has to pay the piper in the worst kind of way as in all Seagal movies. Now this may sound like I didn´t enjoy this movie but acctually I did. It may be only for dumb people but I didn´t say I was ever very smart so when I see Seagal trying to act tough while breaking arms and shooting and decapitating people it just makes me laugh because it is so extreme and when Seagal with his over the top stiffness makes the violence so awful and none-entertaining this is when the fun acctually starts.

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2 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Seagal vs. Jamaican Voodoo Posse

Author: HawkHerald from United States
5 April 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Yeah, what can you say about Seagal movies? He's a maverick ex-DEA agent in this who gets on the wrong side of a bunch of voodoo practicing Jamaican stereotypes trying to corner the dope market. The Jamaicans led by Screwface take a shot at Seagal's sister and niece, so Seagal, his old war buddy (David Keith), and a Jamaican cop go gangbusters on the Jamaicans chasing them through city parks, department stores and eventually back home to Jamaica. There's plenty of clumsy bad guys getting their limbs bent in the wrong direction, gunfights, knifeplay and other mayhem, heck even a swordfight. Seagal'a character in these movies is untouchable and not to be denied so he always wins of course. His shooting and killing of so many bad guys in public places without any real consequences is evidence of this. Seagal's actions and character make sure he comes across as a bloodthirsty maniac rather than the cool anti-hero he tries so hard to be.

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2 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

A piece of junk.

Author: gridoon
30 August 1999

Steven Seagal is a particularly inexpressive actor, and he always plays fascist, particularly repulsive characters. Here, he is supposed to be the good guy, but I was actually fond of the villains. The film is extremely, graphically gory, almost disgusting at times: it belongs really to the "horror" rather than the "cop thriller" category.

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1 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Not a Good Film

Author: marquis de cinema from Boston, MA
14 March 2002

One of the three worst films that Steven Seagal has done, Marked for Death(1990) feels like something that could have been done by Chuck Norris during the 1980s. Heck, it even reminds me of the plotlines of many Chuck Norris films from late 1970s/early 1980s, and some of those films were even better than this. A cross between voodoo horror and samurai action, a combo, which doesn't mix well. Only bright spot is opening action sequence, and cameo appearence of Jimmy Cliff.

Marked for Death(1990) feels bored and looks bored, especially after looking at performances giving by main actors. Steven Seagal's attempts at dry humor are always a mix bag in his films, and here they half work, and half not work. Talented actress, Joanna Pacula is given little to work with here, thus her role is a very wasteful and insignifcant one. Another bright spot is the early appearence of Danielle Harris whose presence makes it in some degrees tolerable to watch.

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2 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Pile of trash

Author: Ron Broadfoot from Canada
4 December 2002

I found the violence in Seagal's first two films easy to stomach, but this one is totally different. You hear bones breaking, a chicken's head being cut off, a butt-naked woman graphically shot in the stomach and a scene with Seagal holding a Jamaican druglord's decapitated head in his hand. Disgusting!!!

This looks a lot more like a snuff movie than an action film. Don't waste your time. Just skip this one and rent Under Siege instead.

Ironically, Leonard Maltin made an interesting comment about Out For Justice. He said "Lots of action. But as for Seagal, don't hand out the Best New Hero award yet. Middling."

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