7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Old school remake of AWOL,
This review is from: Damage [DVD]  (DVD)
If you remember the 80's as a glorious time for straight to video action movies, and find the endless noughties quest to add social comment, wire-fu, CGI, and 'shakey cam', a little unnecessary, then this movie will be a breath of nostalgic air.
What you have here, is a film that pretty much takes the structure of Van Damme's AWOL (aka Lionheart), and fine tunes it with a bit more subtext than Van Damme could have handled at that stage in his career. Steve Austin gives a suprisingly subtle and convincing 'blue collar' performance, managing to imbue his character with a real likeability. He is ably supported by a solid cast, including Laura Vandervoort as an ex tart with a heart, and Waylon Goggins, who suprisingly, gives the weakest performance in the movie.
The fight's are solid, no nonsense affairs, owing more to the 'Any which way' movies than peers such as Undisputed 2 or Never Back Down, and are no worse for it. Austin sells a mean punch, and the basic but brutal choreography fits the low-rent barenuckle environment very well. It is no accident that the big finish is against a champ who looks like Kimbo Slice.
It obviously has a smaller budget than 'The Condemned' (and is not a wwe produced movie), but Austin gives a much better performance, and shows that, given stronger material, he could, like the Dwayne Johnson, escape the wrestling tag, and become seen as an actor in his own right.