Hey gang, Valkor here. And with only a few tech reviews waiting in the wings and just a couple of video games that need to be put up, I'll be finishing up 2012 with a slew of movies - some will be hits and others will fall flat. Then you'll have films like what's next on the chopping block – "Kill 'Em All" on Blu-Ray, which is sort of an in-between, but in the end… not bad. Spoilers ahead.
Kill 'Em All focuses on a group of assassins who've been kidnapped and locked in a room with no way out. A mysterious voice explains to them that they're in what is known as "The Killing Chamber" and that they must fight each other to the death. No reason is given as to why, other than the voice passing out introductions and specific instructions to fighters The Kid (Tim Man), Som (Ammara Siripong - Chocolate), Mickey (Rashid Phoenix), Schmidt (Erik Markus Schuetz), Carttiere, Black Scorpion, Carpenter (Joe Lewis), and Gabriel (Johnny Messner – Wrong Turn at Tahoe). With no other choice, the assassins duke it out one on one (winner gets a weapon of their choosing) and when an opening for an escape presents itself, it's Som, Kid, and Gabriel who are left standing to face the true nature of the Killing Chamber. But why were they brought to the chamber in the first place? The truth eventually comes out when Som and Kid face off against the main boss Snakehead (Chai Hui Liu). I think you know how this one will end.
If Kill 'Em All were a video game, it would be a pretty decent beat em up such as Final Fight or Streets of Rage; I mean you have main characters each with different abilities and costumes, several stages where they fight, weapons, an onslaught of henchmen, mid-level boss fights, all leading up to the final boss battle. Hell one of the characters makes a joke about what they're going through as being exactly like a video game. However as a film, how does it fare?
Compared to other fighting films I've sat through (Undisputed III, Circle of Fury, Bare Knuckles), Kill 'Em All isn't that bad – it's actually very entertaining. It's a straight-forward actioner with loads of well choreographed fight scenes; the camera hangs back at just the right distance, capturing each and every move, with only a few quick edits here and there. It's the opening that really sets up the story, giving you a brief look at how each assassin works and their eventual capture - it's straight up action with little to no dialogue. The acting is just "OK" and for of a film of this style, you really won't care about how well these guys act, only how they fight. PerfectView nod goes out to Ammara Siripong; granted she's the only hottie in the film, but I think she's more than enough sexy to keep your eyes glued to the screen.
Two things: first up, I know I liked the fight scenes and they're very well choreographed, but the moves themselves look mad sluggish, like there's really no weight to their blows. It's not as bad as in Bare Knuckles or Circle of Fury, but it's noticeable. And last, that twist ending. Oh yea there's a twist! (spoiler alret). When facing off against Snakehead, Som reveals that she knew about the Killing Chamber all along (It's supposed to be some kind of secret place) How did she learn about it? From her brother who was the last person to escape from there. And before he died he left behind a special note (a drop) for Som to find revealing all the details about the chamber and how to escape from it. Hey question: Where does one find the time to gather such detail, when they're getting the shit kicked out of them?
When Kid (now known as The Beast) pounds the face of a mid-level female boss character; I mean it's not shown, but you can imagine what her face would look like after that smashing. Eesh!
If you go to the IMDB page, Kill 'Em All won't be available until April 2013. However, you can head on over to Amazon now and get yourself a Blu-Ray copy. I'm not sure if it's legit, however the price isn't bad; and what of the film? Well, if you're a fan of mindless action, a straightforward plot, a cheesy twist, and… oh yea, more action, then Kill Em All is a decent pick-up and also makes for a perfect timewaster on a lazy Saturday afternoon. Out of TOV 5 stars, I give the film a 2.5.