Wrath of Man (2021) Review
DIRECTOR Guy Ritchie and renowned action star Jason Statham reunite 21 years following their previous project, Snatch, in a film that showcases glimmers of the Guy Ritchie of old, but still maintains hackneyed elements from every other action film before it.
Wrath of Man follows H (Jason Statham), an enigmatic figure who recently begins work at a cash truck company responsible for transporting millions of dollars across Los Angeles. As the story unfolds, co-workers such as Bullet (Holt McCallany) and Dave (Josh Hartnett) witness his skills in action as they question his true intentions and previous line of work.
Since bursting on the scene in 1999 with his debut film Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Guy Ritchie has created a plethora of charmingly intense movies, all of which are easily identifiable as being a Ritchie flick.
Ritchie's unique style of directing may be featured throughout, with certain shots and editing choices being tailor-made to suit specific characters, but his tongue-in-cheek writing is unfortunately absent which is evident a mere 10 minutes into the film.
Wrath of Man is a remake of Cash Truck, a 2004 French film written and directed by Nicolas Boukhrief who was brought back as lead writer for this 2021 reimagining. However, much like Spike Lee's Oldboy, the plan to modernise the film for western audiences ultimately failed, leaving us with a film that feels shallow and lifeless.
Despite beguiling audiences into thinking it is a Guy Ritchie original, Wrath of Man still manages to produce some notable positives, most of which stem from the performances given.
Statham was perfectly cast in the leading role as a cold, calculated and mysterious figure with little emotion which, for better or worse, has become his forte over the past 15 years; scenes where the actor showcases emotion feel genuine as well. The supporting cast also deliver decent performances, with McCallany, Niamh Algar and Scott Eastwood all excelling in their respective, one-note roles.
Wrath of Man is best described as a pirate ship ride; the film swings back and forth from being exciting one moment during the intense, well-choreographed action scenes, and dull the next due to the predictable and cheesy dialogue; and as the ride comes to an end, the pace gradually slows down as you begin to count down the minutes until its inevitable conclusion.
If you need a quick distraction, Wrath of Man will perfectly suit your needs; just don't expect yourself to re-watch Guy Ritchie's latest anytime soon.