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Ten years ago, Jake Hopper was a CIA agent who was stationed in Thailand. Then one day, things went sour, and his partner, Sunti barely escaped with his life...after accidentally killing a woman. Jake called it quits and returned to the United States when his wife died, and Sunti became a Buddhist monk to atone for his sins. For the past 10 years, Jake has run a successful private security business, and has been raising his daughter Jessica, who is now an adult. While hiking in Thailand, Jessica and her friend Sarah Winthorpe are kidnapped. A group of Islamic fundamentalists known as the Abu Karaf claims responsibility. Sarah is the daughter of United States senator John Winthorpe. For ransom, the Abu Karaf demand the release of 20 prisoners from American custody. The US Secretary of State urges restraint -- he won't negotiate. Tom Collins, an ex-colleague of Jake's, recognizes Jessica on the ransom tape and tips Jake off. Jake knows that he must rescue the girls himself. An old CIA ... Written by
When the two armed gunmen are coming up the stairs in the first scene to kill Steven Seagal, in one shot they are both carrying pistols. In the next, one clearly has a submachine gun which he wasn't carrying earlier. See more »
I have to admit that when I inserted the "BOTB" DVD in my player, I was a bit afraid to get a similar experience than from Mr. Seagal's recent efforts. Notably the abysmal "Out For A Kill", which did not live up to ANY standards.
Well boys and girls, "OFAK" this one ain't. Tony Ching Siu-Tong knows a lot about directing action and it really shows. "BOTB" reminded me pretty much of an above-the-average Hong Kong -action flick with it's over the top action sequences and a very thin plot. This is no cinema classic, but if one puts this in comparison against many of Hollywood's recent actioners, it stands out surprisingly well. Seagal shows a good form with his newly found Kung Fu -influenced fighting style.
He still uses a stunt double, but hey, the guy is over 50 and his Aikido -material is as impressive as ever. The spinning back kicks done by the stunt men look a bit silly cause you KNOW that they haven't ever belonged into Seagal's arsenal.
Like said; the story is not exactly "BOTB":s selling point. It has it's usual seagalisms (ie. corruption, ex-CIA operatives and eastern religions), but acting wise it actually has it's moments. Byron Mann does fine work as Seagal's troubled partner Sunti and Mr. Jellybeans himself isn't as fed up with his lines as he has been in his recent outings. Cinematography is top notch and the musical score works quite well also. These are certainly not given facts in DTV -movies.
It's still pretty unrealistic to see Seagal to return back to being Hollywood's n:o 2 action star (which he was during "Under Siege"), but as long as his films keep up the level set by "BOTB", I'm happy.
In a scale from 1 to 10, I'll give this one a good solid 7,5. If you liked the old Seagal, you'll be happy to see this one.
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