Title: In the Blood
Director: John Stockwell
Starring: Gina Carano, Cam Gigandet, Luis Guzmán, Stephen Lang, Amaury Nolasco, Ismael Cruz Cordova, Treat Williams and Danny Trejo
Running Time: 90 minutes, Rated R, Available on VOD, iTunes & Theaters April 4th
Eva (Gina Carano) and her husband Derek (Cam Gigandet) are on their honeymoon in the Caribbean. While out to dinner they meet Manny (Ismael Cruz Cordova) a local who promises to show them around the island and take them to the hottest club. At the club they have a run-in with the notorious kingpin Big Biz (Danny Trejo), and Eva gets into an impressive fight with some goons at the club that is caught on camera. The next day Manny takes the couple to a dangerous zip-line spot where Derek’s gear breaks and he falls, and surprisingly only gets badly injured. The ambulance company gives Eva a card to the hospital where they will be taking him, but when Eva arrives, there is no record of her husband. Frantically she goes to each hospital on the island to no avail. She goes to the police where she is confronted by a shady police Chief Ramón Garza (Luis Guzmán) who tells her to stop interfering and let them do their job. Determined to find her husband, she questions several dangerous and powerful connections, causing her to get arrested and thrown off the island. She somehow manages to evade the police and enlists Manny to show her who has connections and whom is covering for the ones who kidnapped her husband; picking them off one by one, more gruesome and bloodier than the rest. Soon she comes face to face with the crime boss Silvio Lugo (Amaury Nolasco) whose reason for taking Derek are not what Ava expected. Soon the couple are fighting off dozens of minions in an attempt to get off the island alive.
The bad: I didn’t think they used Stephen Lang enough in the flashbacks of Eva’s dad who trained her to be a badass. Why was he so good at what he did and what happened to get him bumped off so early in the film? There can’t be too much badass for a film, Gina Carano and Danny Trejo can share, right? It did get a little slow in the searching for Derek montages, but they were necessary.
The good: Gina Carano is just a ….badass. Can I say that word enough? She’s got unconventional beauty, sexiness, and her fighting scenes were just awesome; showing a lot of heart and realism. One of the best scenes in the film is when Danny Trejo show’s up near the end and tells the village children to close their eyes. Such a matter-of-fact, chilling moment in the film that made me sit back (I was on edge most of the film) and relish in that perfect moment. Maybe it’s just the fan in me, but I can’t help but smile once he shows up in a film.
I loved it. Gina Carano has proven herself to handle a lead role and be an action star. The story starts out kind of redundant and sappy until about 20 minutes in, and then from there it’s a roller coaster ride.
Total Rating: A
Reviewed by: JM Willis