BLU-RAY REVIEW: Gun
Val Kilmer and Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson team up in this cliche actioner...
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Most of the time, when a straight-to-video film like Gun appears on store shelves, I ignore it completely. However, when I saw Gun featured one of my favorite all-time actors - Val Kilmer, I had to check it out.
Written by and starring Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson and co-starring Val Kilmer, Gun follows gangster-turned-arms dealer Rich (Jackson) who's past comes back to change his life forever when Angel (Kilmer), who saved his life a decade before, joins his crew.
I'll admit it, I'm a sucker for Val Kilmer. I've been a Kilmer fan since I first saw him in Real Genius and, after Top Gun and Willow...well...let's just say I was sold for life. Now, thanks to Kilmer's role as burned out, has been drug dealer Angel and considering up-and-coming rapper-turned-actor Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson both wrote and stars in this, I decided Gun would get 82 minutes of my life.
Unfortunately, I'll never get those 82 minutes back. Gun is exactly what you'd expect from a low-budget, crime film starring a rapper-turned-actor and a "has been." It's one of the most cliche, poorly written screenplays ever made with Jackson taking on the stereotypical role of an inner city gangster looking to score big. In fact, the only real cool thing I really loved was his calling card: using the world's largest handgun (Smith & Wesson's 500 Cal Magnum) to drive his rivals out of business by blasting them to Hades.
Hot on Rich's tail are two cops looking to clean up the streets. However, when Angel, another gangster who saved Rich's skin a decade earlier, shows up looking for work, let's just say besides a solid number of shoot outs, angry words, and laughably bad moments.
While Kilmer used to be a great actor, he's sadly become - like his character Angel - a "has been." His last great film was 2005's Kiss, Kiss, Bang Bang and 2004's Spartan (a brilliant film by writer/director David Mamet). This doesn't mean I don't still love Kilmer's films. As I've made clear, I'll watch anything he stars in, but that doesn't mean it's good or I'll ever watch it again.
Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it), Gun is one of those films I'll never watch again. While maybe not a total waste of those 82 minutes (as handgun fans finally get to see a Smith & Wesson 500 Calibur Magnum get some screen time), movie goers would be better off re-watching classic crime and drug films like Heat and True Romance and re-runs of quality crime and cop shows like The Wire and Southland.
As for special features, the Gun blu-ray includes only one bonus feature, a standard definition film trailer.
While Gun is - essentially - a terrible film, it does show Jackson is at least hard at work pursuing his career as an actor and writer. He's got some talent to build on and, if he puts as much dedication into his acting as he has his rapping, he'll be a force to be reckoned with in years to come. Sadly, Kilmer simply continues to get older, heavier and more tiring to watch.
Gun is available now wherever blu-ray and DVDs are sold and is rated R for strong brutal violence, pervasive language and a sex scene.
- Jess C. Horsley