REVIEWS: Action & Thrillers — March 11, 2013 at 11:35 pm

REVIEW: Java Heat (2013) + trailer

java-heat-2013

Jake Travers (Kellan Lutz) finds himself inside a police station, covered in blood and in headcuffs. He’s in Indonesia’s Java, and he has recently survived a suicide bomber attack.

Lt. Hashim (Ario Bayu), and starts questioning Travers, who says he’s a teaching assistant on South Asian art history from a U.S. university, who arrived in the country a few days ago.

Travers was the last one, who talked to the princess, the Sultana of Java, before she got killed in the blast.

Later however it turns out she didn’t die, and Travers is not really a teaching assistant either, but a cop, who’s been tracking down a particular terrorist cell.

Soon, unwillingly, Travers and Hashim have to join forces to find and neutralize Malik (Mickey Rourke), a rich terrorist, who kidnapped the princess and plans to sell her.

First, let’s concentrate on the leading actors.

Not to sound like Kellan Lutz was miscast, but who in the world would believe the guy is a “teaching assistant”?

Lutz however, due to his impressive build and looks, handles the action the right way, while not really looking like a “cop”. Something in Travers doesn’t “sell” him as a cop. A man of action – yes, a cop – not really.

Indonesian actor Ario Bayu as Lieutenant Hashim on the other hand is quite believable as a cop, and for some reason at times reminds of Mark Dacascos. Bayu’s acting isn’t great, but he’s believable in his part.

As for Mickey Rourke, who has played pretty much everyone, from cops, to transvestites, to wrestlers, his part as Malik here is quite a strange one.

We’re never explained where he’s from, yet he speaks with French accent, and is referred to as “American” in the film. Malik is a pedophile, who likes to have fun with little Indonesian boys, and he’s a thief as well. A vivid character – just like Rourke himself.

“Java Heat” is an entertaining action film, where the action really starts picking up from the middle of the film.

There are shootouts, explosions, yet not too many fights, which is a shame on one hand, and good on the other hand, because one particular fight there was so badly directed, it’s good there weren’t many of them.

Some of the scenes and locations are really amazing, especially the one in the finale, yet the film at times seems too desperate to be both an action film and a thriller at the same time.

As a result it balances in the middle, and pretty much stays there until the very end. Yet it’s worth a watch – if Kellan Lutz continues to make action movies, he has a chance to become a solid action star in the future.

 

BZFILM SCALE: 5/10

 



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