Vengeance: A Love Story

Dir: Johnny Martin, 2017

4/10

Is Nicolas Cage desperate for money? Is he scared of being cast aside and forgotten about? Or, does he just love acting that much that he’ll take part in any old crap that’s offered to him?

At one time, an A-list member of the Hollywood elite. Now, a B-list straight to DVD and online streaming actor.

On paper, Vengeance: A Love Story is a winner. An action packed revenge film, reminiscent of Death Wish and The Equalizer. However, the realisation of it, is abysmal.

A young mother is gang raped by a few locals and left for dead. Cage is a NFPD officer who knows the mother.

But the rapists hire a hotshot attorney to defend them.

Sickened by the lack of justice meted out to the culprits, the police officer takes matters into his own hands.

Everything I’ve written, has the makings of taut, tense, exciting, pulsing and heart beating action thriller. Unfortunately, very little of what I wrote, is actually in the film.

There is a distinct lack of action or thrills. Any semblance of retribution, doesn’t occur until the last twenty minutes or so. Before that, it’s a poor courtroom drama.

Despite receiving top billing, Cage isn’t given much screen time. When he is in it, you can see that his heart isn’t in it and doesn’t even try. He just doesn’t care.

Director Martin, hasn’t really much of an idea of where to go. The events are bland and uninteresting. Flat and 2 dimensional, none of the characters evoke any sort of emotion or reaction from the viewer.

Don Johnson is the lawyer hired to defend the accused. Smarmy and slimy, Johnson plays the motorbike riding attorney as run of the mill and something we’ve seen a hundred times before.

Lacklustre and platitudinous, Vengeance: A Love Story is a seriously disappointing outing for a star who can do so much better.

Hackneyed and dull, the film showed some real promise. But the straw that breaks the camel’s back is it’s slow pacing and periods of vacancy which, ultimately, let the audience down.

A shamefully missed opportunity.

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