PLOT: A hard-nosed hit man and a naive young cop team up to catch some killers. Rated R
BOTTOM LINE: A fast, funny, slam-bang action flick, with Stallone in full force and director Walter Hill ("48 Hrs.") working his 1980s magic. It's like the decade never left.
CAST: Sylvester Stallone, Sung Kang, Jason Momoa, Sarah Shahi
Plug in the neon and cue the blues-rock soundtrack: The 1980s are back!
Speaking of old movie references, name this plot: Grizzled hit man Jimmy Bobo (Stallone) teams up with tech-savvy cop Taylor Kwon (Sung Kang, "Fast Five") to find the men who crossed him. It's a twist of sorts on "48 Hrs.," another buddy film that mixed snappy banter with hard-hitting, even moody violence. Both films are directed by the pulp genius Walter Hill ("Streets of Fire," "The Warriors"), and this is a welcome comeback for him, too.
Why does this B-picture work so much better than January junk like Arnold Schwarzenegger's creaky comeback, "The Last Stand," or Jason Statham's brain-numbing collision with Jennifer Lopez in "Parker"? The magic is in the details, from the little surprises to the colorful casting. Every bad guy is a pleasure, particularly Christian Slater as a sneering politician and Jason Momoa as the enthusiastic killer Keegan. Momoa, so wooden in 2011's "Conan the Barbarian," absolutely crackles here, and his final mano-a-mano against Stallone is a minor classic.
Some might object to Stallone's frequent Asian jokes ("Nice going, Oddjob!"), but Kang brings dignity to his straight-man role and gets in a few equal-opportunity punches. As for the women (Sarah Shahi plays a sexy tattoo artist), they're often caught bathing and nude. Did I mention the '80s were back?
PLOT A hard-nosed hit man and a naive young cop team up to catch some killers. RATING (R)
BOTTOM LINE A fast, funny, slam-bang action flick, with Stallone in full force and director Walter Hill ("48 Hrs.") working his 1980s magic. It's like the decade never left.