Safe

Quick! Memorize these numbers!

06434.287.22362135.573

5434644

347

3435+97143

13737343354773936012650812

Now. That’s a trick question. The correct answer should have been “Why the %#$& would I do that?” But that doesn’t stop the Chinese Mafia in “Safe” from utilizing a little girl with Rain Man level math skills from holding their most sensitive data. When she becomes the object of an all out gang war, there’s only one man who can protect her…

Jason Statham.

Jason Statham plays Luke Wright, a down on his luck cage fighter who can’t even take a dive correctly. When he fails to throw a fight, he earns the wrath of the Russian Mob, who in turn kill his girlfriend and frame him for doing it. Despondent, Wright contemplates committing suicide by throwing himself in front of an oncoming subway train… until he sees a little girl hiding from pursuers (speaking Russian). His decision to help her takes his mind off of suicide, and thus he considers her to have saved his life. Coupled for his hatred for the Russians, this results in Wright risking his life in order to save the girl.

The girl turns out to be a human supercomputer of sorts, and the Chinese mob have used her to store an encrypted number. When the Russians attempt to kidnap her, you wind up having two rival gangs that Wright has to contend with in order to keep the girl safe. Add in the fact that every cop in this film is crooked, and the police essentially serve as a third faction. Which gives Statham’s Wright plenty of bodies to beat on.

The plot here is overly complicated for a movie that revolves around Statham beating people up. There’s numerous interconnections and backstories between the players – including Wright, who of course, is more than just a cage fighter. All of it is delivered via exposition, too. Characters taking a break from beating each other up to go on long-winded spiels explaining motivations and past events. (Sigh. Eyeroll)  And the end objective – the object that the “Numbers” eventually lead to is as hackneyed and trite as they come. At times, this movie reminded me of the stupid action movies of the 80s we’ve been talking about so much here lately. Plots and characters so bad they can literally give you a headache of you try to take them seriously.

But that’s ok. It’s completely understood that the only reason anyone would ever watch this movie is to watch Jason Statham wailing on people, and the movie delivers that aplenty. Car chases, gun fights, a ludicrous sequence on top of a subway train, fist fights, etc… this movie delivers your typical quotient of action movie violence, and occasionally does it in a clever way. There were some well choreographed segments and some original moves, including one technique involving a subway-car pole that I hope never happens to me. LOL. Statham is at his burly, brusque best here, and if that’s what you’re going to see, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

All others be leery of paying money for this movie directly in any fashion.

C+

21 thoughts on “Safe

  1. I was watching Transporter 2 yesterday and had to laugh at some of the fight scenes. They are so littered with some cool moves and some of the most ridiculous moves, it made me laugh. I was hoping Safe was going to be better and get higher marks. I think I can wait to see this one.

    • DEFINITELY nothing to rush out for.

      But there are some good fight moves here, I didnt think there was anything too ridiculous – in the fist fights. LOL. There’s a lot of other stupid stuff going on, for sure! :D

  2. I still haven’t seen a Statham movie since Snatch (aside from the Expendables, I suppose), and this doesn’t sound like one that will break that trend. Based on your review, it really does sound like a generic 80s action flick, and I would rather see some of those cheesy classics instead.

    • Yeah, I will say though that this seemed to almost strike that right balance of being cheesey and taking itself too seriously that makes cheesey action movies fun. I had a decent time with it at points.

      So lets just say, if you get stuck watching it at some point? You wont be that bad off.

  3. I actually enjoyed “Safe” a lot more than you did but I went in knowing exactly what it was so my expectations were grounded in that. I thought Statham was quite good and the action sequences a lot of fun. As someone who grew up watching a lot of those 80’s shoot’em up cheese-fests, this was a flashback of sorts.

    The problem with the movie is that nothing happens that you don’t see coming a mile away. I also thought the big finale was about as flat and out-of-the-blue as you will see. So “Safe” is far from a perfect film, but I had a pretty good time watching it. I think I gave it a 3 1/2 stars (out of 5).

    Loved your review.

    • Personally I thought the problem with the movie is they have this really complex back story for Statham’s character, and between the gangs, so every five minutes there’s a character that needs to go on an expository monologue in order to fill the audience in.

      I vastly preferred “The Raid: Redemption”‘s choice. Just boil it down, keep it simple, and let the action do the talking.

      Although I agree with you Keith, it did remind me quite a bit of those 80s actioners.

      Thanks for posting up!

  4. I kind of got a Leon/The Professional vibe from the trailer if only due to the significance of the older man protecting the younger girl from gangsters and cops. Obviously Safe isn’t in the same league as LeonSafe probably doesn’t even get to visit Leon on alternating weekends– but it sounds like it could be fun. That about right?

  5. Jason Statham just can’t get a break. Everyone is always framing him for his wife’s murder. As for accents, which accent do people want to stop him from doing. The man is a Brit born and raised. So I hope people aren’t objecting to his British accent. His American isn’t too bad either.

    • LOL. Kinda like Tom Cruise’s Ethan Hunt in the “Mission Impossible” series? How good can he be when he’s constantly getting set up? :D

      Meanwhile, Jaina’s from the UK too, so I’m sure the accent in question – the one recommended for dropping – is the American one.

  6. I really enjoyed how you started this film, exemplifying how ridiculous the initial concept is. Even if you go beyond such a large problem, there’s the overcomplicated storyline that don’t let this film be what it really is: a pull-the-trigger, beat-them-up-all-violence fest for the senses. One more point I would add is that it’s kind of sad that Jason Statham has constrained himself to action films that don’t do him any justice, he’s not a bad actor, especially after seeing him in Snatch just last week. He could do a lot better.

    • Snatch was great, but he was even playing a tough guy there.

      Has he ever done a comedy aside from Snatch? (And even Snatch is kind of more of a Gangster flick) He could be good there… he’s always funny when they call on him to be.

      I guess the “Crank” movies are kind of comedies, huh? LOL

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