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DVD Vault: Gamer


Reviewed By: Kevin Rowland

So, this past weekend I sat down and I watched Gamer. Now to be fair, I didn”t know what to expect from this movie, so I came in with no
bias what so ever. After all, the premise sounded kind of cool…

In the near future people can control other living people as avatars in mass scale, multi-player games. One game (like the Sims), is called “Society”, where every perverted thing you wanted to see and do in the Sims is present, and another is Slayers, (think Halo, but with real people).

The film starts off with a rip-roaring action sequence with everybody”s favorite Spartan; Gerard Butler, running around killing people… and it was in this opening sequence I could already see the directing was going to be an issue. Of course what could I expect when it”s the writer/director tandem of Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor who brought us the classics, Crank and Crank 2. The directing for all the action sequences is quick cuts, odd angles and at some points reminded me of Quantum of Solace where you couldn”t quite tell what the hell was going on. Adding to that problem are the “computer” FX overlays and pauses, though thankfully they”re only present for the first action scene.

As the story unfolds, we learn that the fighters in the game are all cons trying to earn their freedom by winning 30 matches in a row. Kable (Butler) has 28 wins and is a world celebrity, known by millions. While the creator of these games is Ken Castle played by Michael C. Hall of Dexter fame. Now, I”ve never seen Dexter so this was the first time I have experienced Hall and as a villain I thought he was damn good despite the weak material he had to work with. Both Kable and Castle have a shared past that only Castle is aware of, but that will reveal itself as the movie unfolds. Stuck in the middle of all this are “controllers”, the people actually remote controlling the players. Kable”s controller Simon, (played by Logan Lerman) mods his game so Simon can communicate vocally with Kable. With Castle getting worried about Kable possibly earning his freedom, he sends in a ringer named Hackman (Terry Crews) who operates independently of any controllers to assassinate Kable. While all this is happening, news reporter Gina Parker Smith (played by Kyra Sedgwick) is trying to get a big story about Castle, though her story eventually disappears just like her character… and that”s where the problems for this film truly lie; there are so many plot holes and WTF moments (the bottle of booze comes to mind), that by the time the end comes you”re both happy and sad. Happy “cause its over, but sad that it could have been so much better. I didn”t hate this film, but I didn”t much like it either. So if you”re looking for something mindless, borderline stupid so you can turn your brain off; then this one”s for you.

Last but not least, one of the best parts about this film is its running time which is only an hour and a half, making the movie fly by, just like all the cameos in this film. That includes, Ludacris, Zoe Bell, John Leguizamo, Keith David and everyone”s favorite Q, John De Lancie.

Now if you excuse me I”m going to go clean my pallet with DOOM. Owch!

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