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Review Jailbreak (2017): Enjoyable but a little lacking!

genre: martial arts, action, comedy








Four police officers are tasked with escorting a criminal named Playboy to prison. But crime lord Madame Butterfly wants Playboy to be killed for his betrayal and has offered a bounty to whomever accomplishes the task. Naturally the three officers won't allow this to happen and will do what they can to protect him and themselves. 


Basically this is the whole story. Sure you get introduced to the big players but you barely get to know them. However it is made clear who the good and bad guys are. So it's made sure who you are supposed to root for. Once Playboy and the officers are in the prison things go to hell quite quickly and it's one big brawl after another. You might have guessed it that this is what the film is focused on. The combat scenes are choreographed well and are exciting enough. But memorable? I don't think so. The actors clearly are very skilled and they do try their hardest to make things explosive. However there is a real lack of proper direction, story and characterization. On top of that the film is a mixed bag tonally. On one hand we are asked to take the events seriously and on the other there is a lot of comic relief that most of the time feels out of the place. 



Most of the cast are a bunch of unknowns except perhaps Celine Tran a.k.a. Katsuni, a former pornographic actress. Tran plays the main villain and has a real presence. She also has trained martial arts for three years in order to get more action type roles. And it has paid of because she does look like someone who can fight. She is accompanied by several beauties who also seem like they can handle themselves. In one scene where they make their remarkable entrance you get the sense that they mean real business and are about to kick some ass. Apparently they do, off screen. I personally couldn't wait to see them in action. Especially after all that promise. But no, nothing of the sort. For this alone Jailbreak has failed immensely.



Perhaps I am a little too harsh and I simply was expecting too much. All this time I did feel like I was going to be treated with some hard-hitting fights and a narrative that would have made me invested in the characters and the events. Unfortunately the comedic tone ruins this. Don't get me wrong. I actually enjoyed the blooper reel and it was nice to see that the people had fun making this film. However would it have hurt for this film to have some moments where you would fear for the lives of the good guys. I mean whenever they got struck down or beaten they were left alone. Not once did the bad guys attempt to get rid of them. They just left them unharmed. It broke the immersion.

Martial arts and action lovers will find this enjoyable enough even when it could have been far better.  




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