Double Team (1997)

Posted in Reviews by - October 18, 2012
Double Team (1997)

Tsui Hark’s Hollywood debut is an action adventure besieged by the usual MTV exploits of fast editing, snappy dialogue and hyper-violence, not forgetting obligatory product placement (the heroes escape a landmine explosion by creeping behind a Coca-Cola vending machine). But even with all of its B movie failings, there is still a great deal of fun and excitement to be found.

The story lifts from The Prisoner to James Bond to Hark’s beloved comic books following special agent Jack Quinn (Van Damme) on his quest to bring down top terrorist Stavros (Rourke). When a ploy to capture Stavros goes tragically wrong, Quinn finds himself regaining consciousness on a secret island named The Colony where supposedly dead terrorists are living in exile. But Quinn’s got Stavros to kill and a pregnant wife to save, so he plans his escape from the island (which won’t be easy) to buddy up with basketball star Dennis Rodman (obviously) and save the day.

Filmed on location in France and Italy, it is clear from the outset that every penny Hark has spent is up there on the screen with the most telling expenditures being the numerous action scenes. A classy hotel brawl with ‘Clubfoot’ Hung Yan-yan demands the best from Van Damme, while a high-kicking gladiatorial fight to the death with an alarmingly ripped Mickey Rourke on a testosterone binge brings a suitable close to the film’s proceedings.

AKA: The Colony

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