out of 4
All-Reviews.com Movie/Video Review
Review by Susan Granger
2 stars out of 4
After "The Scorpion King," there's no doubt that Dwayne "The Rock"
Johnson is a cinematic force to be reckoned with and, not surprisingly, this
wrestler-turned-actor once again emerges as a competent, if not charismatic,
actor. This action-packed Amazon adventure follows a bounty hunter, or
"retrieval expert," named Beck (The Rock) who reluctantly goes into the jungle
to retrieve Travis (Seann William Scott, a.k.a. Stifler in "American Pie"), the
runaway son of a Los Angeles loan shark. The kid's a smart-aleck treasure
hunter who has discovered the location of a valuable golden idol that's hidden
in a booby-trapped cave. This prized artifact is also coveted by a villainous,
greedy American (Christopher Walken).and an enigmatic bar-wench/rebel leader
(Rosario Dawson) with a secret. In addition to "Option A" or "Option B,"
there's hallucinogenic fruit, hostile monkeys, exploited gold-miners and perils
in the mining town called Helldorado.
Utilizing a formulaic "buddy" script by R.J. Stewart and James
Vanderbilt, actor-turned-director Peter Berg ("Very Bad Things"), decided to
shoot in Hawaii rather than go for Amazonian authenticity - for good reason.
When he was scouting locations in Brazil with producer Kevin Misher, they were
ambushed by native gunmen and robbed of their cash and computers. Oahu was a
lot safer. And the idea of having Arnold Schwarzenegger do a cameo is clever;
his off-hand - "Have fun" - line kind of signifies passing the action-hero
torch to a successor. On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "The Rundown" is a
testosterone-propelled 5. Actually, the most exciting fight sequence is
featured in the theatrical trailer as The Rock braves a smackdown from native
tribesmen, including a tiny Brazilian kick-boxer.
Copyright © 2003 Susan Granger
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