Review: Safe

safe-stills

When it comes to the current generation of action stars there are few that can hold a candle to Jason Statham. From his early years with films like Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels to the Transporter series it was clear the man was going to take the mantle of Hollywood Action King by force. Naturally, even with the loosest of plots, I had to see what Safe was planning to dish up.

It may look hostile, but this is tender moment.

Safe is a story about Mei, a small Chinese girl who has an uncanny ability to remember numbers of any complexity and calculate math at a genius level. Organically the Triads find out about this and decide her future is best with them, they “adopt” her and take her to New York to help with their accounting. Years later, they stumble on a safe code and use Mei to remember it, hoping to collect on millions of dollars hidden within. The plan goes awry and puts her in the middle of an all out war between the Triads, the Russian Mob and New York City’s corrupt police force.

You’re probably wondering right now where Jason Statham fits into this. Well, he doesn’t really. He plays a super cop turned hobo (don’t ask) Luke Wright, who’s also suicidal and suffers from a severe case of ‘wrong place at the right time’ syndrome. He finds Mei wandering a subway after a kidnapping goes wrong and decides to help her out. Finally having a reason to live, Luke decides to make it his mission to save the girl and make sure no one can ever hurt her again.

This works well from an action point of view because once he gets started it’s all out action. Statham is in fine form amassing a huge body count during his siege of the city and the film refuses to shy away from violence at any stage. Every scene offers you the best seat in the house for blood and gore and the front row may get wet. This is no Mercury Rising. There are no real good guys and no-one is coming out of this film clean.

The film’s only real flaws are superficial. Stereotyping is rampant and dialog on the most part feels like it has been pulled straight from a Nineties Stallone film. This is countered nicely with some tender moments from Luke’s past and his interesting relationship with Mei. This doesn’t mean that you’ll see any Oscar winning story moments, but it does fill the gaps between the guns, fighting and explosions.

As a whole the film pays off on what it promised to deliver, hardcore action and blistering fast paced violence. Fans of this kind of film will be in heaven, the more squeemish viewers may want to skip this one as it has more violence than a drunk evening with Bobby Brown. Simple, brutal and effective, Safe is a great reminder of what a good hard R-rating can offer and if you have the stones this film will leave even the meekest of you roaring with testosterone. A must see.

For a second opinion on Safe you can also check out Dave’s NSFW review for Australian Penthouse here.

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Joshua Philpott

Tech MacGyver
Games writer, podcaster and tech wizard. Obsessed with obscure horror films, crazy gadgets and caffeine. Passionate, argumentative and open minded. Freelance writer and co-founder rawDLC.

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