Arnold Schwarzenegger’s (not so) triumphant return to acting sees him starring in the action/thriller Sabotage, a particularly twisted tale concerning a corrupt force of DEA agents, led by Schwarzenegger’s character Jon “Breacher” Wharton. When they’re not killing bad guys, this elite gang of agents spend their time drinking, visiting strip clubs and partaking in various other untoward activities that definitely wins them the title of worst cops ever. This includes stealing $10 million from a cartel safe house after a DEA raid, which mysteriously goes missing from the sewer pipe they try to hid it in. But, their attempt at thievery doesn’t go unnoticed and, one by one, the ten members of the task force are being murdered. Can the remaining team figure out who is behind it before it is too late?!
I hope you can detect the sarcastic undertone, because in all honesty this movie is bad, bad, B-A-D, bad. There are almost no redeeming qualities, except for maybe a couple of mildly interesting plot twists towards the end of the film that don’t quite add up but, hey, I wasn’t that invested in the plot anyway. For starters, not a lot of it makes sense: these “police” people (and I use the term very loosely) are complete menaces with their incessant drinking, drug-taking and offensive behaviour towards pretty much everyone, including their superiors. They’re like the corrupt-cop stereotype on steroids, and I’m not entirely sure how they’ve avoided being kicked out of the DEA. It’s almost as if no research has gone how DEA agents are supposed to operate, which particularly irks me when they burst into these drug houses and start firing willy-nilly on the occupants, killing most. Whatever happened to “drop your weapon, hands where I can see ’em”?!
There also appears to be a lack of understanding about how the human body works. It’s true, I haven’t seen much bloodshed in my time, but the film’s ultra-violence and frequent gore is comically unrealistic, with copious amounts of strangely coloured blood that seems to burst forth from the body at the slightest split of skin. If you’re a lover of gooey innards, then there is plenty of material here, but in truth, I’ve seen better in an episode of Game of Thrones. In terms of action, there are a few scenes of interest, but they’re mostly marred by the fake blood spurts and experimentation with odd camera angles and the dreaded hand-held effect. When you talk about film characters with depth, you want to see some ‘flaws’, but in the case of these agents, flaws are all they got! They lack dynamism, depth and a vocabulary that extends beyond four-letter-words. Even John “Breacher”, whose dark past is revealed as the movie progresses, falls flat and Schwarzenegger’s performance shows no new side to him, post-politics.
This is definitely not a movie I would recommend. Poorly written, directed and filmed, I would steer clear unless you’re having a competition with your mates to see who can find the worst film. In which case, ding-ding-ding, we have a winner!