Dir: John McTiernan
Starring: Chris Klein, Jean Reno, LL Cool J, Rebecca Romijn-Stamos

If there's a point here, I missed it. The potential in the 70's classic is there, with the satire perhaps even more relevant now. Yet they cast former ECW owner Paul Heyman as the sport's commentator...and that's it. The rest of the film is more about business; since, for little or no reason, it's set in central Asia, all cultural resonance is lost. Jonathan Cross (Chris Klein, a.k.a. Charisma Khasm) is the star on a team owned by Alexi Petrovich (Reno). He is after an American cable deal, and has discovered that injuries boost ratings - so arranges them on cue. Cross is understandably miffed to discover this, so he and teammate Marcus (LL) try to flee. Cross is captured and brought back for a final game, with his girl Aurora (R-S) now on the opposing side.

One sequence sums up this entire film: an escape attempt shot entirely in night-vision green. Why? Anyone? It's cute, for about ten seconds. Pity it's closer to ten minutes in duration. While pointless, at least it's relatively clear what's happening, and that's more than you can say about the incoherent mess of the game itself. Before the first match Heyman tries to explain it, then gives up, saying all the other rules are in Russian. Cop-out! Yet even visually, these sequences make no sense, being badly shot, choppily edited, and we never see a scoreline, so can't get excited about the result. Maybe that is the point - the "sport" is irrelevant. If so, it still falls a long way from justifying this turkey.

[P.Reynard adds, "I noticed that Chris Klein doesn't even do up the strap on his helmet and does all kinds of stuff without it coming off... Man, It truly did suck..." Hey, we should just be grateful that he wasn't wearing his helmet backwards or at a gansta-rapperish angle.]


Actors try to escape from the set
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