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The Tournament
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Reviews & Ratings for
The Tournament More at IMDbPro »

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Index 77 reviews in total 

99 out of 148 people found the following review useful:

Believe me, Middlesborough never looked better....

7/10
Author: intelearts from the big screen
16 October 2009

There are only three other reviews here so far: two give this 10 (Err... two different named reviewers, identical reviews, duplicate memo to PR team please....idiots) and the other 1 so let's assume some will love this and others will hate it. I'll try to review it....

Plot: pretty easy sell, every seven years the top assassins hold the tournament; they kill each other until the last survivor wins it all; all organized, tracked, and betted on by billionaires, of course.

The whole thing is kind of like no limit hold'em.... but they can't all dodge bullets, baby. Think Tekken and you're not in the right area, it is better than Uwe Boll and that ilk.

Not quite lineage as Guy Ritchie (Obviously) but only needing Jason Stratham this is exactly what is says on the box: an out and out kill or be killed cartoonish film.

Filming is good, nothing too dark or menacing but just nice.

It's not Battle Royale but if action is your thing and you liked Death Race 2000, Shoot Em'Up or Wanted then you'll be happy enough.

Any gripes about morality are irrelevant here, this is in a moral vacuum, and so are plot holes, logic, or how heads explode like watermelons, this is either your type of film or you should really it avoid totally.

Yep, it's violent - limbs fly, people die in well, imaginative ways - but it is not horror.

It's all well put together, nicely cast, and creates enough interest; better than just hunt or be hunted there is a real plot and even character development...

Oh and great to choose Middlesborough, seriously one of the ugliest, most desolate pile of concrete crap evaar...ha ha....shooting it up the kyber pass can only improve it....

This is a movie to watch with mates and wince and cheer to....

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51 out of 72 people found the following review useful:

Has been done better before!

5/10
Author: e_esben from Denmark
27 October 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

So there is a tournament every 7 years where the worlds best assassins fight to their death, and the winner wins 10 mio dollar. Each assassin gets an implant and a locating device so they can find each other. The tournaments takes place in a normal city, where the mess that is made will be blamed on terrorists and madmen to keep the tournament a secret.

It is a premise with lots of potential for a fun movie. What breaks this movie is the bad character development; you know who are going to be be the finalists from the start, but just just hope that they will be killed off because there are no reasons to like them.

Still the movie has so great action that makes it relatively enjoyable. There are some brutal kills (e.g. people exploding with meat all over) and some fun fights (e.g. strip club). But it has all been seen much better in movies as The Condemned, Battle Royal, Death Race and The Running Man.

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63 out of 105 people found the following review useful:

so much potential

7/10
Author: ticklegear from United States
16 October 2009

Positive: some of the action in this movie is so creative and realistic I can't help but wonder if any stunt persons were killed or seriously injured during shooting.

Negative: The plot is straight forward and had lots of potential. The writers had potential to make a great film but were lazy with dialogue and character development lending to the hollow action film syndrome. The holes in the plot are so ridiculous that they detract from the tension.

Ugly: The acting is terrible. I think the script is largely to blame here are the lines are so cheesy that I imagined holding a straight face was really hard.

Summary, if you're looking for a mindless action flick then this film will impress with some great sequences.

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46 out of 75 people found the following review useful:

"The Tournament" - a decently cool idea staggers, crawls, then dies.

5/10
Author: bobslider from United States
27 October 2009

The Tournament - a deadly game played out every 7 years, where the world's richest people put 30 of the world's deadliest assassins in an out of the way town, and bet on who will be the last man (or woman) standing. The surprise (aha( is that through a plot twist, a drunken priest played by Robert Carlyle becomes an unwilling participant. Ving Rhames, Kelly Hu and that dueshbag from LOST round out the character actors.

A movie like this, for me, needs two things - badass characters - and I mean MAKE THEM BADASS! Have a guy who uses snakes as weapons, and has an eyepatch, and uses a boomerang! Have a girl who has poisons and throwing stars, and who killed her whole family when she was 3 years old - I want some bloody history goddammit. Have assassins who get their arms pulled off and still keep killing. What we get here is a stupid video game sequence for each of the top 5 assassins, THE TEXAN, THE FRENCHMAN, THE Asian CHICK, etc, kicking and punching a bit before freezing for the camera. This is not the way to go. Show them in their environment. SHOW us, don't just tell us how badass they are.

The movie has a stupid subplot where Ving Rhames's wife has been killed, and hes there for revenge, blah blah blah, these movies tend to get all cocked up when they try to make an emotional plot work, and this one is no exception. I feel like having this tournament, plus a bystander who's a priest who then becomes one of the players is more than enough plot for an action movie, the rest can be just watching the carnage unfold, and if the characters are interesting, and the action scenes are creative, that's all it really needs. This movie tries to straddle both, and ends up having mediocre characters having mediocre fight scenes (the two fight scenes with the FRENCHMAN were the exceptions, mostly because I'm a sucker for that parkour jumping around stuff).

One last thing - movies like this need to understand the idea of contrasting elements. Contrast these deadly killers against a very normal town! Show them getting coffee at starbucks, fighting in a wal-mart, contrast crazy with normal. Instead the towns people seem to barely exist, the cops are nowhere, you never get that moment where a kid looks at a bleeding murderer from behind a box of paper towels, and the killer goes "hey there buddy" before blowing away a crazy monkey fighter who leaps over the tootsie roll display. This place is the town equivalent of an empty warehouse.

People are comparing it to death race, but I actually liked that better, because it embraced it's stupidity, and didn't try to have that emotional subplot. The Tournament is really a movie best enjoyed after at least four beers, and even then you might find yourself nodding off near the end.

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38 out of 61 people found the following review useful:

Interesting premise but not nearly as spectacular as it could be

5/10
Author: BernardoPinto from Portugal
19 October 2009

When I saw the trailer for this film I immediately thought The Tournemnt had potential to be one of best action films of the last years, unfortunately that's not the case. The premise is very interesting even if flawed; every seven years somewhere in the planet(usually in a random city) a tournament between the world's deadliest assassins takes place. 30 assassins fight against each other in a bloody battle royale hoping to survive. The last one standing wins the tournament and receives a cash prize and more importantly the title of world nº1 assassin. This is obviously a receipt for lots of action,fighting,blood,death and so on... But as much as I love the concept, the movie felt short of my expectations...there are a couple of well done fighting scenes but overall the action in the film is not nearly as spectacular as the trailer led me to believe, it's just not impressive at all considering other action films that have been done before, and the few twists in the story are very easily predictable. The acting was average, while Ian Somerholder and others did a good job, Ving Rhames, for instance, was constantly over-acting. The tournament could have been amazing,instead it is a forgettable movie with a few more or less known actors that doesn't deliver what it promised.

5.5/10

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46 out of 78 people found the following review useful:

Excellent actioner

8/10
Author: dima-12 from Belgrade, Serbia
18 October 2009

When I decided to check out "The Tournament" the expectations were moderate. Actually I expected it to be a pleasant DTV title with a couple of cool actors.

What I got instead was a thrilling actioner that surpasses most of the theatrical releases of the same genre. The action is hyperkinetic and violent, and Scott Mann has undisputed Hollywood potential.

The plot about the assassin tournament is clean and simple, a lot like "Taken" and when it comes to comparison between these two films, only advantage for "Taken" is Liam Neeson. "The Tournament" provides solid acting but it doen't have such a potent star. Actually, if we consider its budget, "The Tournament" is really outstanding in terms of casting because it combines available theatrical-feature actors like Kelly Hu, Liam Cunningham,, Robert Carlyle and Ving Rhames with top DTV names like Scott Adkins. Scott Adkins' potential was obvious ever since he first appeared in Isaac Florentine films and in "the Tournament" he is accompanied by Sebastien Foucan, the parkourist we remember from "Casino Royale".

Fight scenes are marvelously staged, with great fight choreography, but also outstanding gunplay and vehicle stunts. When it comes to the sheer amount of action "The Tournament" gives you the most for bang for the buck. It is very hard to invent some new kinds of action set-pieces and choreographies but in a couple of scenes "Rhe Tournament" does that.

Also, you must bear in mind that action is very violent and gory. The sheer amount of gore is comparable to Neill Blomkamp's "District 9". Bloodletting is stylish and lavish and Scott Mann really has the guts (quite literally) to pull it off.

I am surprised that this film failed to get theatrical release. I mean, it's quite obvious that American distributors wouldn't release because none of the stars are a draw in the US but I guess it should've worked quite well internationally.

Writer Gary Young was lucky to move on into theatrical business with Matthew Vaughn production "Harry Brown". I hope Scott Mann will accomplish the same.

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32 out of 54 people found the following review useful:

It will pass the time nicely

7/10
Author: arthur lang (grindhouse74) from United Kingdom
17 October 2009

There has been so much trash released over the past couple of years, however The Tournament is one of those fun trashy movies that hits the action spot very nicely, what we have is a game that takes place every 7 years and 30 top assassins play out for the top prize, and yes they have to kill each other to win 10 million, a bug has been placed inside them so they can track each other down and a bunch of rich folk place there bets in who will win.. Well thats pretty much the plot.. So what now follows is a Battle Royal kill fest, and boy do we have some brutal and bloody kills, the film makers were smart to even through in some nudity...and hey presto we have another trashy exploitation movie, but this one kinda rocks, it will remind you of other movies you have seen...like Battle Royal, The Running Man, and even Gamer, so don't expect anything original but there are some nice set pieces, blood gets splattered all over the place and oh... did i even mention that there is some nudity?

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11 out of 13 people found the following review useful:

What a surprise! 7/10

7/10
Author: MaybeTomorrow from Netherlands
18 December 2012

Wow. I was expecting a mediocre executed movie but it turned out to be awesome from the first minute in. I don't know why the movie gets so much negative feedback here.

When you watch the movie it's very clear that the makers were inspired by "Battle Royale" and "Terminator 2". A solid cast: Ving Rhames (always bad-ass), Robert Carlyle, Ian Somerhalder (who does surprisingly well!) and a action-packed small role for Scott Adkins. Guns, gore, boobs and loads of stunts & action!

Highly recommended for action-fans!

7/10

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16 out of 24 people found the following review useful:

Good effects but no plot *** WARNING Spoilers included*******

4/10
Author: datahoover
20 February 2010

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Well where do i start, This movie has absolutely no plot, absolutely everything is predictable and half of it impossible or unlikely. for example there was a big fight scene in a nightclub. Various assassins were pulling out guns, shotguns , and machine guns.. (how many nightclub doormen would allow you entry carrying these, I am surprised a rocket launcher was not used as well) the effects and fight scenes are good considering they are over the top, there is a lot of gore also for those of you that love a gorefest. Shame there was not a more interesting script though, this is the major letdown for this movie. It is watchable though, but be prepared that the script was as much use as a chocolate teapot when they made this movie.

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31 out of 54 people found the following review useful:

Farcical Pumped-Up Action

6/10
Author: drunkenhopfrog from www.popbunker.net
20 October 2009

If there is one glorious thing about making movies going in to the second decade of the millennium, it's that someone can have a successful movie, and a pretty good movie, that does not have to have a theater run to gain an audience or make money. There has been plethora of direct to DVD or direct to OnDemand releases that are just as good, or better, or better in a different way, than a lot of wide release movies. Usually the biggest difference between the two are marketability. The main consideration for marketability is the star power of the cast or the filmmakers.

Ving Rhames, one of the stars in the ensemble cast of "The Tournament," is probably the most marketable name associated with the movie. Most people still remember him as Marcellus Wallace from Pulp Fiction, so that right there gives a clue as to the marketability of "the Tournament." That's OK. "The Tournament" should live on in DVD rentals and sales for years to come.

"The Tournament" is ridiculous in its attempt at scripting and plot. The concept and continuity is as (un)developed as a Jason Statham franchise. But the action. Oh, my, the action is dialed to the extreme.

The "plot" is that every seven years the best assassins from all over the word are gathered together in a small town to go at each other in a free ranging field of play until there is one man or woman left standing. This year the action takes place in Middlesborough, a small town in the UK. The advantage of this small town is that it has more closed circuit cameras than any place else in the world. Therefore a team of hackers led by a dude that looks like my friend Spike (of the famous podcast The Paul & Spike Show) can somehow gain control of all of these cameras and bring live feeds of the action to a room full of billionaires from all over the world that are placing bets on the contestants. The group is hosted by Powers (Liam Cunningham), who channels the most campy essence of Richard Dawson from The Running Man .

Included assassins are Joshua Harlow (Rhames), the defending champ who is only back to settle a score; Lai Lai Zhen (Kelly Hu), a killer with a conscience; Miles Slater (Ian Somerhalder) a crazy killer from Texas; and the alcoholic Father Joseph Macavoy (Robert Carlyle) who, through a devious tactic by another assassin, gets pulled into the game against his will.

What develops is a farcical stretch of anyone's credulity, but the action is so fun and violence so over-the-top that a fan of the action genre cannot help but to enjoy the show. The gore level of the violence is nearly on par with Stallone's Rambo and the physical stunts (many actually done by this fun cast) are the high flying craziness of District 13-style.

The finale comes as a bit of a surprise in that it revisits a style similar to action movies of the 80s and 90s. The satisfaction level of the ending is very high.

"The Tournament" is a blast for action fans. The movie is simple with only a hint of a plot that's only purpose is to set up action sequence on top of action sequence. If one starts to deconstruct the plot too much, it is revealed for the silly and contrived object of convenience that it is. So don't. Pop the flick in, grab a pizza and a craft beer, and enjoy the show.

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