Stars: Bruce Willis, Kellan Lutz, Gina Carano, D.B. Sweeney, Joshua Mikel, Steve Coulter, Dan Bilzerian, Heather Johansen, Roman Mitichyan, Christopher Rob Bowen, Rob Steinberg, Lydia Hull, Tyler Jon Olson | Written by Max Adams, Umair Aleem | Directed by Steven C. Miller
I have a love/hate relationship with Bruce Willis these days. On the one hand he stars in films I love such as the Red, G.I. Joe and The Expendables; and on the other he appears in direct to market dross like The Prince, Set-Up and Vice. Now don’t get me wrong, some of the direct to DVD titles Willis has appeared in are pretty good, Fire With Fire for example, but he’s been batting way below average on the DTV front recently.
Extraction sees a ruthless terrorist group kidnap retired spy Leonard Turner (Bruce Willis; GI Joe: Retaliation, Die Hard, Armageddon), and threaten to unleash a global catastrophe if its demands are not met. Of course not ones to negotiate with terrorists, the CIA sends one of its best agents, Victoria (Gina Carano), to hunt them down, rescue Turner and save the free world. But also on the case is Leonard’s son, Harry Turner (Kellan Lutz; The Legend of Hercules, The Twilight Saga, The Expendables 3), a government analyst repeatedly turned down for field service, undertaking his own unsanctioned rescue operation, and in the process, becoming a wanted man. Inevitably Victoria s and Harry’s paths cross, and they must set aside a troubled history in order to meet their common goal. Together they must evade highly skilled operatives, deadly assassins, and international fugitives to bring Leonard home and save the world from a terrorist plot…
Thankfully Extraction, which comes (as per the cover blurb) from the folks behind Lone Survivor and 2 Guns, falls into the “good Bruce Willis movie” camp – thanks to the fact Willis’ role is actually little more than an extended cameo and thanks to some super-solid direction from Steven C. Miller (Silent Night), who expands on the action-filled horrors of his The Agression Scale and Under the Bed to create an hard-R rated, take no prisoners, forget being politically-correct, action movie that isn’t afraid to let its characters break some heads and torture some bad guys in their quest to take down the terrorists. In other words it’s got a real old-school feel.
It’s the fact that Extraction has a genre director behind the camera, especially one who has experience in the exploitation field, that makes this film feel different to many a DTV action flick on the store shelves today (it’s certainly not a dull as many I’ve seen recently), even if it does follow your typical action/thriller tropes – including some fantastic fight scenes which combine traditional action with more hardocre MMA-style arse-kicking to create a kinetic, frenetic action movie that makes even former Twilight star Kellan Lutz look like a total bad ass (and that’s no mean feat), so much so that he hiolds his own against one-woman fight machine Gina Carano (who is also so, so good in DTV actioner In The Blood).
A DTV action flick that puts a number of more high-profile films to shame, Extraction is available digitally now and is released on DVD and Blu-ray on March 14th, courtesy of Kaleidoscope Home Entertainment.