A Man Apart

"Weak"

A Man Apart Review


In their attempt to make a shoot-'em-up with a soul, ready-to-be-crowned action king Vin Diesel and director F. Gary Gray ("The Negotiator") wind up with a dark and handsome movie -- quite unfortunately titled "A Man Apart" -- that's less than exciting and only superficially deep.

As a DEA bad-ass on the war path against an anonymous drug kingpin who killed his wife -- something you know is coming the minute he stares lovingly into the eyes of a beautiful actress without any name recognition (Jacqueline Obradors) -- Diesel seems to have taken the part so he could dust off some of his emotional range without straying too far from his muscle-rippling, shaved-head, five-o'clock-shadow tough Guy-with-a-capital-G screen persona.

While he does sell his brokenheartedness, with the aid of some beautiful ocean-side sunsets in front of which he despondently holds his head in his hands, Diesel and Gray know that's not what the people pay to see -- so pass the ammo, baby! Several thunderous, chaotic, hard-to-follow shoot-outs are the picture's big set pieces.

One is a raid on a ritzy underground Tijuana nightclub, during which Diesel chases down and captures an escaping Baja cartel leader (Geno Silva) -- which opens the door for an anonymous apparent rival, known only as Diablo, to take over the border-running cocaine operation. Diablo's identity is supposed to be the movie's big mystery, but since there's only one other south-of-the-border character with a speaking role, it's almost impossible not to find yourself 10 steps ahead of the movie's hero by the end of the second reel.

Yet it wouldn't make much sense for Diablo, whose rise to power was made possible by Diesel's bust, to kill Diesel's wife in an ambush on their how-can-a-cop-afford-that beachfront home -- so it's pretty clear almost immediately that some big twist is waiting in the wings.

If that twist didn't leave a slew of unanswered questions in its wake -- about such fundamental plot point as why Diablo staged a violent take-over of the cartel in the first place and who ordered the murders of the cartel leader's wife and kid -- "A Man Apart" might have made up for its other shortcomings.

For instance, Gray and first-time screenwriters Christian Gudegast and Paul T. Scheuring put in an admirable effort toward fleshing out some of the film's stock characters. Unstoppable cop Diesel and partner Larenz Tate ("Biker Boyz," "love jones") have a strong, believable bond that dates back to their days growing up on the streets -- a background that provides them with a been-there edge and plenty of connections when they start working their way up the drug chain to find Diablo.

But with all its off-the-shelf plot developments (Diesel becomes a loose cannon, is forced to turn in his badge, and goes after Diablo on his own), and passé peripheral roles (Timothy Olyphant plays a Porsche-driving Beverly Hills whitebread middle-man Diesel beats up), "A Man Apart" fails to stand apart -- despite the cast and crew's serious stab at making a serious action movie.



A Man Apart

Facts and Figures

Run time: 109 mins

In Theaters: Friday 4th April 2003

Box Office USA: $26.2M

Box Office Worldwide: $44.4M

Budget: $36M

Distributed by: New Line Cinema

Production compaines: Newman/Tooley Films, "DIA" Productions GmbH & Co. KG, Joseph Nittolo Entertainment, New Line Cinema

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 11%
Fresh: 14 Rotten: 116

IMDB: 6.1 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Sean Vetter, as Demetrius Hicks, as Hollywood Jack, as Memo Lucero, as Stacy Vetter, as Ty Frost, as Mateo Santos, Jeff Kober as Pomona Joe, Marco Rodríguez as Hondo, as Gustavo Leon, as Garza, George Sharperson as Big Sexy, Malieek Straughter as Overdose, as Marta, Jim Boeke as Bad Cop

Also starring:

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Imperium Movie Review

Imperium Movie Review

First-time filmmaker Daniel Ragussis takes an unusual approach to this thriller. Since it's based on...

The Girl With All the Gifts Movie Review

The Girl With All the Gifts Movie Review

Like a 10-years-later follow-up to 28 Days Later, this small British thriller takes a refreshingly...

The Magnificent Seven Movie Review

The Magnificent Seven Movie Review

Director Antoine Fuqua brings his usual fascination with violence to this remake of the iconic...

Bridget Jones's Baby Movie Review

Bridget Jones's Baby Movie Review

As it's been 12 years since the last Bridget Jones movie, expectations aren't too high...

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years Movie Review

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week - The Touring Years Movie Review

A-list director Ron Howard worked with the surviving Beatles to assemble this engaging documentary, which...

Blair Witch Movie Review

Blair Witch Movie Review

It's been 17 years since The Blair Witch Project shook up the cinema and created...

Anthropoid Movie Review

Anthropoid Movie Review

Outside the Czech Republic, few people know about Operation Anthropoid, a spy mission in 1943...

Advertisement
Kubo and the Two Strings Movie Review

Kubo and the Two Strings Movie Review

From Laika (The Boxtrolls), this is one of the most beautiful, sophisticated animated films in...

Captain Fantastic Movie Review

Captain Fantastic Movie Review

An offbeat comedy-drama with a timely kick, this charming family road trip takes on some...

Hell or High Water Movie Review

Hell or High Water Movie Review

Sicario screenwriter Taylor Sheridan delivers another fiercely intelligent, engaging story that maintains high suspense while...

The 9th Life of Louis Drax Movie Review

The 9th Life of Louis Drax Movie Review

With heavy overtones of Hitchcockian mystery and intrigue, this stylish thriller is the enjoyably melodramatic...

Kickboxer: Vengeance Movie Review

Kickboxer: Vengeance Movie Review

The 1989 Muay Thai action movie Kickboxer starred a young Jean-Claude Van Damme, who pops...

Julieta Movie Review

Julieta Movie Review

Iconic Spanish filmmaker Pedro Almodovar is back with another powerfully complex female-centred drama, along the...

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping Movie Review

An astute satire of the pop music business, this raucous mock-documentary is consistently hilarious from...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.