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|Index||107 reviews in total|
After watching the trailer when it was first released, I didn't feel
what I always feel when I see Jason Statham in an action movie, which
is giddy. There was something missing, but how can I say no to Jason
Statham in an action packed movie? I just can't. 'Safe' ended up being
good. Not great, just good. The beginning was a little slow, but the
way they told the story, was a bit of bouncing back between Luke Wright
(Jason Statham) and Mei (Caroline Chan), so it didn't really come out
running, but I guess I can't complain too much about it because it
definitely picked up after. As I stated earlier, how can I say no to
Jason Statham in an action movie. The action was amazing. It's that
kind of action where the audience is either clapping or yelling,
"Ooooohhhh snap!!!" followed by some laughing. The storyline was
decent, I mean, it didn't really stand out and there are a few scenes
where you can probably figure out what's going to happen, but it got
the job done. The acting was sub-par once you take out Jason Statham
and Catherine Chan (Mei), who I thought did a really good job for her
first Hollywood movie. There were a few cheesy lines, some epic quotes,
one of which I put in the subject title and I'm sure you'll enjoy it
too when you hear it and some funny moments; more than you usually
expect from an action movie, which wasn't so bad.
'Safe' is your typical Jason Statham action flick. I think it's fair to say, we don't watch Jason Statham movies expecting Oscar nominations; we watch his movies mainly because the action is phenomenal. If you want to watch a good, action packed movie, then 'Safe' is a safe bet this weekend. See what I did there?
saw the public screening of Safe in a film festival.Frankly speaking I
was stunned by the movie.Simple plot but the twists and turns in the
movie were amazing.I will not reveal the plot details because you will
loose interest in it.It's slick,stylish and high on acting and visual
Jason is the man who reigns supreme in this film and leaves a strong impression on the audiences mind with his stellar performance. His smile, dialogue delivery and every expression deserves a bow.
The director Boaz Yakin handles the scenes well and never lets the adrenaline rush or the script to fall flat. He keeps the audiences glued to their seat and this versatile man gives as a slick action thriller which is far better than Haywire,The Mechanic or Killer Elite.
The script is well written and every scene is well handled. Dialogues are brilliant and none of the scene fall flat. No unnecessary toilet humour and soundtracks have made the film even more appealing.
Safe is an amazing movie with unforgettable action scene and car chase sequences and one of the best of Jason Statham. Highly Recommended.
'Safe' is the latest vehicle to showcase Jason Statham's ability to
punch, kick, and shoot various henchmen. The plot here plays more of a
role than compared to past JS films, as this one involves a young
Chinese girl with a brilliant memory who's wanted by both the Russian
and Chinese mob, aided by corrupt cops, and it's just to a
down-on-his-luck Jason Statham to save the day.
When watching a film like this, suspending your disbelief is a must, which is just a given. Things happen in this movie that not only wouldn't be possible, but you wonder how some characters can escape out of situations not only alive, but untouched. But this was actually one of my favorite Stathom movies in a while. I despised his recents efforts in throwaway films like The Mechanic and Killer Elite. It hasn't been since Transporter 3, another mindless romp, that I've enjoyed one of films this much.
The film's worth seeing if you're an action movie fan with some time to kill, in sort of a Sunday afternoon stay at home type of way. You'll cringe at the acting and dialogue of the little Chinese girl, but you'll be entertained.
'SAFE': Three and a Half Stars (Out of Five)
Jason Statham action vehicle written and directed by Boaz Yakin. Yakin's previous directing efforts include 'REMEMBER THE TITANS', 'UPTOWN GIRLS' and 'FRESH', so a B action film starring Jason Statham is an interesting choice for the filmmaker. The story revolves around Statham playing an ex-cagefighter who's made enemies with the Russian mob and corrupt NYC police department that comes to the aid of a young girl wanted by both. The movie is surprisingly unsentimental and a pretty hard hitting action film. Statham fans should be more than pleased.
Statham plays Luke Wright, a small time MMA fighter who fails to throw a fight and pisses off everyone who was betting against him, including the Russian mob. The mobsters kill his wife and threaten him with the knowledge that he'll always be watched and anyone he befriends or even comes in to contact with will be killed. So he travels the streets of New York City alone, depressed and ready to kill himself until he meets a young girl named Mei (Catherine Chan) in need of his help. Mei is an eleven-year-old mathematical genius who was forced to work for the Triad and now holds the code to an important safe in her head. She's wanted by the Triad, Russian Mafia and corrupt NYC cops. Luke takes it upon himself to help her and of course finds a new reason to live.
The premise and adds could lead you to believe that this is another cheesy and sappy action star befriending kid film but Jason Statham fans can rejoice in the fact that he doesn't take that path. Statham is a much more respectable and high moraled movie tough guy than the likes of The Rock and Vin Diesel. At least thus far in his career he can't be labeled a sellout. This film is about as violent and brutal as any film Statham has done. Thanks in large part to Yakin's decent directing. The script could have used some work; it's routine and lacking bite. The story of Statham befriending the little Chinease girl does still have some heart and emotion though, but just the right amount. As far as Statham action films go this one is about average. Exactly what I expect from one, no more and no less.
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Ironically, the most frustrating aspect of "Safe" is reading the
streaming subtitles for Russian and Chinese. Being that I speak neither
I'm straining to absorb the detailed dialogue and narrative threads.
Yes, Director and Writer Boaz Yakin's story is far from complex, but
you forget that the words really don't matter here. Jason Statham is
the badass with a big heart protecting a young Chinese girl prodigy
played by Catherine Chan from the Russian mob and the Triad, because
she memorized a series of numbers that accesses dire information. Much
of "Safe" is sheer brute force. Statham's signature strike to the bad
guy's trachea punctuates this. Statham's fighting sequences are high
impact and resonate with awesome speed and power.
Curiously, many critics slam Statham and Yakin for doing formulae and not stretching Statham's range. This is craftsman-like formulae. Statham delivers the action we want to see on screen. The fight scenes in the Russian and Triad clubs are amazing. I particularly loved the scene where Statham's Luke meets Chan's Mei in the New York subway. Statham viciously disposes the Russian thugs after Mei with hooks, kicks, throws, and joint shattering locks. He is the best martial arts action star right now. He always offsets his physical elegance and power with a gruff austere visage. I think he actually displays more of his humanity than in other movies. He tears as he surrenders himself to the men who murdered his wife and child. What makes "Safe" work is Statham and Chan's gentle bond.
Chan is more than just the cute kid in peril. She makes Mei even smarter than she lets on. She is the math genius forced to memorize a series of numbers. In a quiet scene Mei tells Luke, "They are not random." Luke gets, "They're a code." Don't under estimate the enrollment of Statham as protector of Chan. Chan's Mei confesses to Luke, "I don't need another father. I need a friend." I loved when Luke tells Mei that she will be safe "until my dying day".
When we meet Luke (Statham) in the present and through a series of flashbacks, he appears as a second rate cage fighter, now homeless. He mistakenly floors a YouTube sensation (nice touch by Yakin) in a fight, and puts him in the hospital. The Russian mob kills his wife and unborn child, because he did not throw the match. A lot does not add up. Luke is a world class fighter. There is more to his pathology that the script should have shaded. It turns out Luke was one of the toughest cops in the city, who had honor in a corrupt police force. More so his relationship with evil Chris Sarandon as Mayor Tremello hints at Luke's darker origins as Black Ops assassin. Luke's former partner now enemy Alex (charismatic Anson Mount) is the sellout who still works for the Mayor. Mei (Chan) is the innocent math prodigy brought over to the States to work for the Triads. Leader Han (paternally evil James Hong) has Mei memorize vital numbers, not trusting computers and the like.
At his lowest point Luke sees Mei in the subway and from his point of view Luke sees that she saves his life. He also realizes that Mei is being chased by members of the Russian mob that he knows all too well. Yakin is clumsy here in the narrative synchronicity. I buy it, because I want to see Statham kick some ass. Really, I was in with the touching chemistry of Statham and Chan. They have an understated love for each other. Mei, who is beholding to Luke, confesses, "We save each other "
In the great showdown of good and powerful evil, I initially thought I was short changed. Then I realized heroes generate other heroes. There are many goofy things going on with "Safe" and they are forgiven. "Safe" gets that the hero always protects the one he or she loves. I really liked "Safe".
Mei (Catherine Chan) is a little genius when it comes to numbers. She
can remember everything and calculate anything in her mind. That's why
she's very valuable for the Chinese Triads, who use her as a computer
that can't be hacked or traced. One day, she's asked to memorize a long
number and drive to another place to learn a different one. But the
Russian mob steps in and assaults her ride, killing almost everyone.
Mei can escape and this is when she meets Luke Wright (Jason Statham).
Former elite cop, former small time MMA fighter, on the run from the
Russian mob who lost a bunch of money for betting against him in a
match and killed his wife in revenge. The will to protect this little
girl gives him a new will to live, a drive to go on. And so they run
away; away from the Triads, the mob and the corrupt NYPD, trying to
figure out why everyone wants either those numbers or her death.
It's a bit of Mercury Puzzle and 16 Blocks. And despite my usual fears, the story did not turn cheesy due to the kid. But the girl didn't turn into an unrealistic bad ass as well. Also they did not develop a forced deep relationship between Luke and Mei, which would be unrealistic, considering that the story doesn't go that long. The film is featuring fast paced action, wrapped into a decent (though not great) story and is supported by good acting. Well, at least good acting from the leading characters, but the supporting ones weren't that bad as well, so you don't have to suffer from it. So overall, a quite enjoyable movie, which I would recommend to fans of story driven action movies and especially to all Statham fans.
Just for fun, let's check the Statham clichés. Shirtless? Yep, first time you see him in the movie. Car-chase? Of course. And when Mei was a bit concerned about his driving style, I was just waiting for a comeback from him that was like "Don't worry kid, I've been doing this for several movies now."
Cast: OK, I love Statham. Every role he has done, yes even in "In The
Name Of The King", is almost perfection. Now just because he is awesome
, doesn't mean that the movies he is in are, just like "In The Name Of
The King". Recently though his movies all seem to be the same kind of
film and that isn't necessarily a bad thing. Lots of action, lots of
cheese and some story that involves a rogue badass, aka Statham. I say
all that but anyone else in this/those roles and the film wouldn't
work. But anyway more on the film in a mo, Statham plays against a
little girl played by Catherine Chan, who is awesome, to say she is a
child actress. Not much on the rest of the cast, but mentions for James
Hong's (known for Kung Fu Panda, Balls Of Glory) mob boss and Robert
John Burke's Captain Wolfe.
Overview: Like i mentioned earlier, fans of movies like The Mechanic, Blitz, Crank or Transporter, will probably keep on liking this. It's packed full of gun fights, karate/fist fights, explosions, car chases and Statham's signature grunting voice. The story itself is mixed. the whole thing with the girl, i like. People do have photogenic memories, and like James Hong says sending messages via computers is risky. So using the girl i get. The whole gangs fighting each other and corrupt cops is old news so all is right there. The one thing that troubled me was when the explained Statham's history. At one point he was just a cop, then he's some kind of Bane like experiment, didn't get that at all, but other than that the film is very fast paced, and wraps up nicely.
The opening 10 minuets of this film i really liked. They managed to set the story up of the two leads by mirroring their plot's. The girl is in a car, Statham is in a car, they both go to sleep etc and i really enjoyed it. This movie doesn't really offer anything new to the action genre, but neither does it fail.
Recommend: Statham fans yes, everyone else meh.
Overall: 7/10 For more of my reviews head to http://www.facebook.com/noelfilmreviews
This film is the most fun I had at the theaters along with "Haywire"
and The Hunger Games; films that have thrilled me while at the same
time giving me food for thought. Safe doesn't exactly fit the above
criteria, but what it does is deliver a well-written action thriller
with twists and turns in the plot to get any interested viewer bang for
Statham stars as Luke Wright, a down-on-his-luck cage fighter who gets caught up in a dangerous situation that leaves him with no will to live any longer. At first he appears to want to give it all up, but a chance encounter with girl with a secret gives him his second calling and he unwittingly becomes her guardian angel. But the two are entangled in a power struggle over the girl's gift. Thus the ride has begun.
Boaz Yakim handles the action and script really well. it's only that some of the dialog that becomes contrived and forced, but that doesn't slow down the film at all. The action scenes are, however, really impressive; showing off Statham's mad skills as an action star and he's really good at being both formidable and vulnerable at the same time. With his steely stare and narrow eyes, he's one mean man you don't want to mess with unless you value your very life. But it's newcomer Catherine Chan that really shines in her first ever feature-film role. With a wide variety of emotions, she is horribly confused and scared at what's unfolding before her very eyes. And Reggie Lee is simply good as the villainous lackey to an ever deliciously evil James Hong as crime boss Hang Jiao.
But even with all that, if the filmmakers stripped it of it's action film hijinks, at it's core is a story of two complete strangers coming to each other's aid. Sadly the film never delivers more on the sentiment between the two characters's personal emotions. There are hints of a developing relationship, but it's overshadowed by the action scenes, which are impressive, undermines the emotional aspect between Luke and Mei. The ending(which I will not spoil) leaves it open to the possibility of a sequel. I really wish to see a follow up to this film because the film has a really fascinating dynamic on which to build on.
But despite all it's problems, Safe is a good action thriller with twists that keep you guessing and action scenes that will marvel you.
In China, the girl Mei (Catherine Chan) is a genius that looks like a
computer in numbers. She is abducted by the Chinese Triads and the boss
Han Jiao (James Hong) sends Mei to Chinatown, in New York, to help him
in the control of his activities.
Meanwhile, the fighter Luke Wright (Jason Statham) has his life destroyed when he wins a fight against the will of the Russian Mafia and accidentally kills his opponent. The Russian mobsters kill his wife and the alcoholic Luke wanders on the streets and hostels with no objective in life.
One day, Han Jiao asks Mei to memorize a long number and soon the Russian Mafia abducts the girl from the Chinese mobs. She escapes from the mobsters she is chased by the Russians; by the corrupt detectives from the NYPD; and by the Triads. When Luke sees the girl fleeing from the Russian mobs in the subway, he protects the girl and discovers that the number she had memorized is the combination of a safe where the Triads keep 30 million dollars. Luke is an elite agent and uses his skills to protect the girl.
"Safe" is a great brainless action movie with a messy lead character. The situation of an old boss from the Chinese Triads that does not trust in computers but trusts in the ability of a young girl that has been abducted from her family is stupid. But the lead character Luke Wright is a complete mess: the guy is a killer and elite agent that has his life completely destroyed when he feels sorrow for killing his opponent and irritates the Russian Mafia. Then he passively accepts the death of his wife by the Russian mobsters. But out of the blue, he rekindles his personality to protect a stranger Chinese girl in the subway. This situation is laughable when the viewer sees the past and connections of Luke with the corrupt detectives of the NYPD. My vote is six.
Title (Brazil): "O Código" ("The Code")
Safe fulfills the expectations of modern thrillers with its breakneck
pacing, over-the-top violence, and explosive action sequences. Don't
let the numerous location changes within the film's opening few minutes
fool you there's little time wasted on lengthy introductions or
complex motives as the tumultuous mayhem starts quickly and refuses to
subside until the final frame. The brutal combat borders on the
monotonous, but it also unflinchingly delivers what its audience wants
to see, without stopping for development. While you'll likely guess who
wins each round of warfare, clever moments of pandemonium and
self-reflective humor arise from the maelstrom to reveal the film's
slightly more insightful mindset on cathartic thrills. But then it's
right back to Jason Statham shoving a fork in someone's throat.
11-year-old Mei (Catherine Chan) is abducted and forced to work for ruthless Chinese gangsters due to her extraordinary skills in memorization and mathematics. When Mei is given a numerical code to a safe containing 30 million dollars, the Triad, the Russian mafia, and corrupt New York officials all want her dead or alive. Luckily for her, disgraced former cop Luke Wright (Jason Statham) happens upon the fleeing girl and rescues her. Determined to protect Mei, Wright launches a full-scale war against the criminal leaders and their vast armies of merciless killers.
Laudation goes to this film for knowing exactly what it is and not attempting anything out of its reach, hiding behind underdeveloped themes, or muddling genres. It doesn't waste time with Luke's history, in-depth personality traits, supporting people in his life, or even the visuals of his wife. In a matter of seconds, he's a lone wolf with nothing left to live for. He's the only honest cop in Manhattan, has a soft spot for victims of social injustice, and can kick some ass like a one-man army all qualities that make him incompatible with comrades, the authorities, and villainy. In a world where everyone is corrupt and out to get him, Luke must battle Russian thugs, Chinese gangsters, police, politicians, and even pickpockets, armed quite heavily with martial arts skills, muscles (as evidenced by the very first scene he's in, sans shirt), an arsenal of random guns picked up along the way, and a salvo of hilariously macho catch phrases.
The editing is keen, with snazzy transitions, tricks to amp up the intensity of violence, and creative methods of boosting the body count. There's plenty of chaos for the sake of spectacle, and although boomingly extravagant, it's never augmented by the annoying shaky cam. The bad guys get it good and go through the obligatory merciless errands to deserve it. The climax is the highlight, with surprisingly unexpected bluster arising from the least likely route of commotion. Always aware of how generic action movies play out, Safe goes against the grain to deliver unique stunts, unpredictable showdowns, and unanticipated fun. It's a brisk 94 minutes that keeps the punches coming in a guilty pleasure, mindless action/adventure variety.
- The Massie Twins (GoneWithTheTwins.com)
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