Friday, 16 February 2018
ACTION MOVIE REVIEW: THE SHANGHAI JOB
The Shanghai Job
Released By: Signature Entertainment
Running Time: 110 Mins
Audio: English Region 2
Due Out: Out now!
Reviewed By: Sandra Scholes
Get in. Get Out. Get Even.
From the director of Skins and Marcella, Danny Stratton (Orlando Bloom) is a former private security agent now assigned to low level guarding work. The reason? A Van Gogh painting had got stolen when he should have been looking after it. A chance to change his fate comes along when he has to escort a Chinese antique out of Shanghai. The question is, can he do it without anything going wrong?
Though he knows all too well that failure is not an option, the antique is stolen and Danny has to find out who has stolen it and keep his lover out of danger. The antique is a Zodiac vase called "The Soul of China," which Danny finds has also been stolen by the same gang who took the Van Gogh painting a year ago.
Orlando has had a varied career in movies, with Lord of the Rings and Pirates of the Caribbean being what he is most famous for. In The Shanghai Job he proves he has shed his pretty boy image in recent movies such as Haven, Elizabethtown, Zulu, and Romans. I think Orlando must have enjoyed working on Haven to want to star in this, though I think it is a good move to work on an action thriller set in Shanghai.
To lose another valuable asset originally in his care is enough to make anyone annoyed, but to have it happen to the same man twice couldn't possibly be a coincidence. Danny has to do what he couldn't manage before, rescue the vase and his lover. For those who enjoyed Taken and Ocean's 11, this is along the same lines with Orlando as a more than able action hero on plenty of action scenes, a car chase, fight scenes and intense drama. Actors can have a tendency to work in the same genre for most of their lives, so it is great to see that Orlando has got out of his comfort zone to work on a fast paced action with a character hellbent on getting even whose character fits in with the thriller aspect of this movie.
For die hard Bloom fans, this is a different side we haven't seen of him, the closest I can get to what he is here was when he played hard-man Balian in Kingdom of Heaven. He has set his bow and arrow aside from his roles as Legolas and Paris for punching and kung-fu kicking his way through this movie and carrying it as a lead man in ways he never had before. I am very interested in why he wanted to take this turn in his career, but also thrilled to see he has found himself in a very gritty action role that is, dare I say, right up his street. Viewers can expect to be kept eyes glued to screens for the duration as Orlando and his supporting cast get into their respective roles and impress us with what they have to give, and give they do. Could this be a trend for Orlando to surprise us from now on when he stars in a movie? We shall see.