Sunday, December 28, 2008

Death Race

Death Race is a remake (sort of) of the cult classic Death Race 2000. David Carradine and Sylvester Stallone have been replaced in the new version with Jason Statham and Tyrese Gibson respectively (sort of). They needed to make a few (well... many) changes to modernize the story. While the original was a cross-country car race set in the futuristic year of 2000 where killing pedestrians scored points, the latest take has the Death Race as a televised game in the not-too-distant future that pits convict against convict in an effort to gain profits for the jailors and give the prisoners a means to earn their release (sort of). Statham plays a former professional racecar driver who is framed for the murder of his wife and is asked to take on the persona of Frankenstein - the most popular driver in Death Race - while in prison. Finding that the warden, guards and even some of the prisoners are involved in his misfortunes, Statham does what you would expect... kicks ass and takes names... except this time he has a car that is super-rigged for the purpose of killing some folks. If you need a second to let all that soak in, I understand. I'll just move on with the ratings and you can catch up when you are ready.

Original Release: 2008
Running Time: 105 minutes
Death - $2
It's called Death Race and stars Jason Statham. Moving on...

Hello Ladies - $1
Each of the drivers (sort of) is joined by a female navigator that gets bused in from the nearby ladies' penitentiary. And since this is Hollywood, every single one of them is hot and not wearing anything close to standard-issue prison garb. There aren't any "scenes" but you get some eye candy amidst the gas and gore, so that's at least something.

Nerd Factor - $1
There are a few nerds out there that will be familiar with the original and geek-out for this one. While I am one of those nerds, I also know that there aren't too many others out there. Also, while some of the names from the original were maintained, a lot of the other details were changed and not all for the best.

Action and Ass-Kickery - $2
It's called Death Race and stars Jason Statham. Moving on...

Billicious - $1
This one has some special meaning to me. Back in college Maxim named Death Race 2000 (the original) as the number one b-movie of all time. So, naturally, my roommates and I went out and bought multiple copies of it. Some college dorms had porn regularly on the TV, but our room had movies... and most of them bad... and this was their king. Since I still live with one of my friends from college (he's a very very patient guy) I had no choice but to pick this up and make sure it had a home in the house. It didn't hold up to the original completely, but I still have a soft spot for it. Besides, it is called Death Race and stars Jason Statham.
Total Rating: $7

Do you like car races? Do you like machine guns and explosions? Do you like Jason Statham? If you said yes to ANY of these, then I recommend giving Death Race a try. It is pretty much everything you would expect from the trailor... violent, gory and fast paced. And sometimes, that's exactly what you're in the mood for. Or is that just me?

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