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Wild Card (2015)

R  |   |  Action, Crime, Drama  |  2015 (Azerbaijan)
5.6
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Ratings: 5.6/10 from 19,970 users   Metascore: 40/100
Reviews: 76 user | 100 critic | 19 from Metacritic.com

When a Las Vegas bodyguard with lethal skills and a gambling problem gets in trouble with the mob, he has one last play...and it's all or nothing.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Cassandra
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DD
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Roxy
François Vincentelli ...
Benny
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Kinlaw
Davenia McFadden ...
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Pit Boss
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Storyline

Nick Wild (Jason Statham) is a Las Vegas bodyguard with lethal professional skills and a personal gambling problem. When a friend is beaten by a sadistic thug, Nick strikes back, only to find out the thug is the son of a powerful mob boss. Suddenly Nick is plunged into the criminal underworld, chased by enforcers and wanted by the mob. Having raised the stakes, Nick has one last play to change his fortunes...and this time, it's all or nothing. Written by Lionsgate

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Never bet against a man with a killer hand


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence, language and some sexuality/nudity | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

2015 (Azerbaijan)  »

Also Known As:

Heat  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$30,000,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

At one point, Brian De Palma was slated to direct until Simon West replaced him. See more »

Quotes

Cyrus Kinnick: Safety means much to me. I checked under every synonym for safety, but there was no Nick Wild.
Nick Wild: Well, you should have tried between "chapels" and "charm schools."
See more »

Connections

Version of Heat (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Piano Concerto No.22
Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Performed by Tibor Benyi, Henrick Wiese, Peter Clemente and Fumiko Shiraga
Courtesy of BIS Records
By arrangement with Source/Q
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Competent action thriller that wants to be a drama
30 January 2015 | by (Paris, France) – See all my reviews

Wild Card has been a passion project of Jason Statham's for several years, the actor having even secured Brian De Palma for the director's chair at one point. With De Palma stepping away, Statham enlisted the competent but much less exciting Simon West with whom he'd already collaborated on The Mechanic and The Expendables 2.

West was excited to work with legendary screenwriter William Goldman again after The General's Daughter and assembled an impressive supporting cast around Statham, the likes of Stanley Tucci, Anne Heche, Jason Alexander and many more. A vastly underrated actor, Statham easily holds his own among these and gives a fine performance as Nick Wild, first played in the 1986 original by Burt Reynolds.

That picture was a notoriously troubled production that left a sour taste in William Goldman's mouth, but he obviously thought highly of his screenplay, as story-wise, Wild Card plays almost exactly like the original, beat-by-beat. However, watching the on-screen proceedings it is hard to believe this is the same man responsible for such classics as Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, All the President's Men, The Princess Bride and so many others.

From its top notch cast to its look and pacing, Wild Card feels like it wants to a gritty drama, a moody character piece with bursts of action in the vein of Michael Mann's Collateral, a film with which it shares quite a few characteristics. Unfortunately it never quite reaches the heights of its ambitions, the film being unable to conjure up something special, unexpected, original enough to put it over the top.

That is not to say it doesn't deliver. Without saying much, the film draws you into this world easily and convincingly. The acting is very strong and the characters pretty appealing. The writing is sharp. Cinematographer Shelly Johnson gives the film a distinctive look and the editing is excellent. The score is composed by the ultra-talented Dario Marianelli. And then there's the action.

While there are only but a few of them, the action scenes, handled by Hong Kong legend and frequent Statham collaborator Cor(e)y Yuen, are incredible, exhilarating and eminently memorable. Even more to the film's credit, each one is very different, both through their visual and musical presentations.

All this makes for a perfectly serviceable film but one unfortunately stuck between two worlds. Which makes it quite a shame that Brian De Palma backed out of the project as his style would have no doubt elevated Wild Card to something pretty fascinating.


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