The review of Army of One, a b-series action where the courageous and sexy protagonist is seeking revenge for her husband’s death, broadcast tonight on RAI4.
Dillon is a police officer returning from a mission in which he was injured and decided to take a break, leaving for a vacation to spend with his wife Brenner. The chosen destination is in the Alabama countryside but since their arrival the couple has had problems with some shady local figures, who harass her and threaten him. The situation is resolved initially in a stalemate, thanks also to the intervention of the mother of the peasants, known by all by the nickname of Mamma.
As we tell you in the review of Army of One, while they are intent on camping Dillon and Brenner are surprised by a heavy downpour and find refuge in a currently empty house, deciding to enter to seek temporary respite from the rain. But within those four walls they discover a real hidden arsenal and just before leaving they are captured by the annoyances with whom they had previously had an argument, actually part of a well-organized criminal cartel that dominates the area. Dillon is brutally killed in cold blood and Brenner herself is also left for dead; the woman actually survived and is now in search of vendetta. And her past in the Ranger corps will come back more than useful to defeat the gang …
You can’t get more classic
Elementary, or even better cheesy, in the reiteration of classic stereotypes in a far more than mediocre packaging, played entirely on a clear contrast between good guys and bad guys where the absolute protagonist is an angel of vengeance in female guise, those of the very blonde Ellen Hollman. Which is right role physics but nothing can characterize a one-dimensional character, who transforms into an inexorable war machine after the event that kicks off the actual dynamics from revenge movie.
Army of One would like to blur the main figures involved a little, but it resolves in a stalemate both in the prologue that accompanies us in Dillon’s recent past – of which there was absolutely no need, given the playing time for which he then furrows the screen – and in a couple of flashbacks showing the military training that shaped Brenner into a one-piece heroine.
Wash Me in the River, la recensione: su Prime Video un mediocre action-thriller
Sweet home Alabama
On the other hand, the screenplay combines a whole series of clichés in the representation of the Southern States of the United States, with the forests and marshes of Alabama in which a rough and violent humanity moves, daughter and slave of events that seem linked to a past that continues to persist. Mamma’s gang and her numerous children, one more “bastard” than the other, and their trafficking in human beings is a caricature as gratuitous as it is tacky, to act as a Manichean contrast to our mission of revenge. The Church in the background, with the leader who is an assiduous visitor and entrusts herself to the law of the Lord, subjugating the entire community with her hard fist, could offer potentially interesting ideas but gets lost in a stalemate, just like the rest of the secondary characters (difficult to remember a sheriff so anonymous and useless for the purposes of the story).
Dynamics management action it is of mediocre workmanship, and if the main actress puts effort and sweat into it, the same cannot be said of the direction of Stephen Durham, never able to take risks or try to stage something vaguely original. Between hand-to-hand combat and shootings, with the bush serving as a hypothetical manhunt (or woman on this occasion), Army of One offers nothing new and loses comparison with the much more inspired prototypes. The low-budget soul is not enough to justify frankly avoidable limits and the ninety minutes of vision weigh more than they should as the key points of the story run out after the first half hour, excessively stretching the broth to arrive at a more or less canonical duration.
A couple on vacation in the southern United States is targeted by a gang of rednecks, part of the local underworld: he is killed in cold blood, she left for dead. Fatal mistake on the part of the villains, as the would-be victim is unbeknownst to them the first female Ranger of the US Army and now she is out for revenge. As we told you in the review of Army of One, we are faced with a revenge movie poor in means and elementary in the script, with the blonde and sexy protagonist who transforms into an implacable war machine to make her tormentors pay . A superficial film consumed by stereotypes, in a clear narrative that goes from point A to point B without any surprises.
Because we like it
- Ellen Hollman at least tries, also engaging in action scenes…
- … but nothing can do against a screenplay that forgets to take care of the characters and events.
- The action dynamics are devoid of a safe and conscious direction.