Aug 14, 2009

[Movies] The Rundown (2003)

The RundownI first encountered Peter Berg on the hospital drama Chicago Hope. It was a pretty good show and it taught me more about hospital administration rather than just the hardcore medical stuff. Yeah, and there were those odd moments were my budding homosexuality told me he was kinda cute. It's interesting to note that he's moved on to the world of directing with a variety of films of differing qualities and most recently it's been announced that he'll be trying his hand at yet another adaptation of Frank Herbert's Dune.

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson is hardly what would come to mind when someone says the word, "actor", and yet he's been really trying his best to break into movies and he's had a few decent box office showings here and there. Then there's Seann William Scott whom I've never really thought to be all that funny but I've always considered him to be rather hot despite the annoying banter. Oh boo me and my love of upper body development.

Put all these guys together and add in one boring afternoon and you end up with a surprisingly good afternoon despite very, very low expectations.

The Rundown (or "Welcome to the Jungle") is an odd action comedy about Beck (Dwayne Johnson), a professional "retrieval expert" who is trying to get out of the retrieval business in order to open his own restaurant. As a last job, he's tasked by his boss to retrieve his son Travis (Seann William Scott), who is searching for some lost treasure in South America. Retrieval should have been easy enough were it not for Hatcher (Christopher Walken), who pretty much runs the town of El Dorado. He believes that Travis knows where a particularly valuable artifact can be found and will not let Beck leave without the prize.

I know, the premise is pretty odd and complicated a bit more by the fact that Beck chooses not to use guns in executing his missions, but that's just fun fluff. Naturally Johnson has some pretty fun action sequences, which I have to admit were done rather well more often than not. Christopher Walken only knows how to play Christopher Walken, which isn't at a bad thing given the role he fulfills here. He's such a scene stealer, I swear to the high heavens.

Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson photograph...Image via Wikipedia

Acting-wise, I have to admit I felt that Johnson was more believable than Scott. He really figured out his role this time around and managed to stick to it. Scott on the other hand still needs to work on taking his wise-cracking routine a few notches higher in order just being the college jock stereotype that he's played over and over again in his past films.

It's not a life-changing movie, but it's certainly entertaining and fun to watch, which is a good thing after a long and stressful day. I'm just not sure what Peter Berg is going to bring to a Dune adaptation based on this piece. Now that's something to think about.

The Rundown gets 3 humping monkeys out of a possible 5.


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