Thursday, April 2, 2015

Wild Card Blu-ray Review

Reviewed by Allie Schembra
Nick Wild (Statham) is a Las Vegas bodyguard with lethal professional skills and a personal gambling problem. When a sadistic thug beats his friend, Nick strikes back, only to find out the thug is the son of a powerful mob boss. Suddenly Nick is plunged into the criminal underworld, chased by enforcers and wanted by the mob. Having raised the stakes, Nick has one last play to change his fortunes...and this time, it's all or nothing. 

Film (3 out of 5 stars)
Nick Wild is a bodyguard-for-hire who has a gambling problem.  Of course, this means he lives and works in Las Vegas.  He has a shady group of friends, one who hires him to get beaten up in order it impress his girlfriend and get her to move across the county with him.  One day, a young man comes to the office looking for Nick’s protection.  He just wants Nick to make sure he’s safe when he gambles.  Nick takes him to an off-the-strip casino where he gambles $10 at a time, which for a guy like Nick who has a gambling problem, drives him crazy.

As Nick is following this guy around, his ex-girlfriend, Holly, a call girl, is thrown out of a car in front of an emergency room.  She’s beat up, assaulted and barely recognizable.  When Nick finds out, he visits Holly and she asks him to find out the name of the guy who hurt her.  Using his connections, Nick finds out that the guy is the son of a mobster and tells Holly to leave it alone.  Unfortunately, Holly insists on getting her revenge, so Nick has no choice but to get involved.

Nick and Holly pay DeMarco a visit in his suite and after a fight, they leave him and his henchmen tied up.  This causes problems for Baby, the owner of the hotel and a shady mobster in his own right.  Nick convinces Baby that he and Holly were in the “right” and Baby lets Nick go with a warning that DeMarco will come after him.  After a night of gambling, where Nick won and lost more than $500,000 playing blackjack, DeMarco confronts Nick and the fight spills into the back alley of a greasy restaurant.

Wild Card is your typical Jason Statham movie. He’s a kickass fighter, a guy down on his luck or retired, who is just trying to get by. I enjoy his movies.  He’s an amazing fighter and always gets his guy.  Looking at the cast list for the movie, I expected to see a lot more of Sofia Vergara and Jason Alexander. I feel like their names were only added to the top billing list to give it more of an A-list feel.  Both actors had one scene which maybe lasted five minutes. Same with Stanley Tucci. It’s like the producers didn’t think Jason Statham could carry the movie on his own. But I think he could have. Without the other actors’ names on the box, I still would have wanted to see it. 
Video (3 out of 5 stars)
Wild Card is presented in widescreen 2.40:1 and is good.  The picture is clear and the fight scenes are good.  Colors were sharp and the seedy underbelly of Las Vegas seemed realistic.  I enjoyed watching this on my television and would happily have gone to see it in the theaters, as well.
Audio (3 1/2 out of 5 stars)
The English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio presentation of Wild Card is good.  The dialogue is easy to hear, the volume level is even.  Even Jason Statham’s words are easy to discern through his accent.  Sometimes, in his movies, his lines come out muffled and mumbled.  This is not the case in Wild Card. Subtitles in English, English SDH and Spanish are also included on the disc.
Extras (2 out of 5 stars)
The two behind-the-scenes features were pretty much it for this section.  I’m not sure the shorter of the two, the script vignette was necessary as the longer feature covered a lot of the same information.

  • Script Vignette – About five minutes of behind-the-scenes interviews with the cast and crew.
  • Original Sin: Las Vegas and the Characters of Wild Card Sixteen and one-half minutes of the characters of the movie.   Includes interviews with the cast and crew talking about how they approached their characters.
  • Audio Commentary with Director Simon West
  • Also from Lionsgate – The previews from the beginning of the disc.
  • Bookmarks – Can Lionsgate please stop including this useless feature?

Summary (3 out of 5 stars)
I am a fan of Jason Statham movies. I think he’s an awesome badass and not unfortunate to look at. Wild Card is another is long line of his movies that I enjoy and that I will watch again. If you’re looking for something deep or with a strong story, this is not the movie for you, but if you want something you can suspend your belief and can have fun watching, then you will enjoy this.

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