Bloodshot (2020)

Director: Dave Wilson
Writer: Jeff Wadlow, Eric Heisserer
Based on: Kevin VanHook, Don Perlin and Bob Layton‘s comic
Cast: Vin Diesel, Eiza González, Lamorne Morris, Sam Heughan, Talulah Riley, Toby Kebbell, Guy Pearce, Siddharth Dhananjay, Jóhannes Haukur Jóhannesson, Alex Hernandez
Seen on: 10.3.2020

Ray (Vin Diesel) is a soldier. Returning home from yet another dangerous mission, he is happy to relax with his wife Gina (Talulah Riley). Until they are both kidnapped by Axe (Toby Kebbell) – and killed. But Ray rises from the dead with the help of Dr. Harting (Guy Pearce) and his nanotechnology that gives him superhuman powers. Ray uses those powers to hunt down Axe and avenge his wife’s death. But he soon discovers that things aren’t quite as they seem.

Bloodshot is not a great film, but it is entertaining and could have been actually pretty good if it hadn’t been abandoned entirely by its own soundtrack.

The film poster showing Ray/Bloodshot (Vin Diesel) walking towards the camera, a smoking gun in each hand, his chest glowing and pierced by bullet holes.

Bloodshot is a decent action film that does play nicely with some tropes – like the “villain threateningly dancing to music” or the general “husband avenges his wife’s death” thing. It shows some self-awareness that does the film a whole lot of good and definitely makes it better than it seems at first. Although there are plenty of other tropes that don’t get subverted, so you probably shouldn’t expect too much.

Given that it is an action film, of course the action itself plays a huge part in it. And with the first big fight scene, the movie’s major flaw became really obvious: Bloodshot blocks a tunnel by crashing a truck filled with flour. The flour floats around, creating a visually very intriguing effect (although you just have to ignore that flour is actually highly flammable and everything should have become a flaming inferno within seconds). The fight choreography is pretty nice. The editing is good. And then there is the soundtrack which is so incredibly lackluster and boring and unexciting, the entire scene falls apart. I have never seen a film’s soundtrack stab it in its back – until now. The soundtrack remains subpar throughout the entire film, but that scene is just particularly bad – probably because it would have been the best (fight) scene of the film otherwise.

Ray/Bloodshot (Vin Diesel) standing in front of a car covered in flour.

Disregarding the soundtrack, there are some good parts to the film. I liked the characters – Ray, KT and Wilfred (Lamorne Morris) in particular (which is as the film intended, I guess). Morris’ Wilfred is the biggest source of humor in the film that otherwise stumbles over its own comedic timing a lot. I wouldn’t mind to see more of him.

In any case, I was definitely braced for worse with this film – and what a nice surprise that it was actually okay (and had some nice, albeit obviously fake tattoos). Definitely not a film where I wished I brought alcohol – and it very much could have been.

KT (Eiza González) and Ray (Vin Diesel) having a drink together.

Summarizing: decent, but the soundtrack ruins a lot.

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