A lot of people have taken the time and effort to wonder just how many subpar movies Nicolas Cage is going to make before he’s square with the IRS, and some wonder if maybe he’s gotten used to this level of notoriety and is simply sticking around to mop up the VOD market. He might have a better chance than most since the number of movies he’s starred in over the years is kind of impressive, even if the movies aren’t. Some might ask why any of us who write on these sites take the time to critique such movies, but it’s mostly because, well, you, the reader, might want to pay attention before wasting or spending your time on something that’s not really worth the effort. Kill Chain does have its interesting moment,s but a lot of it feels like the rambling of a screenwriter that was bought on the cheap and wasn’t pressured into creating the type of dialogue and action that would be considered worthy of blockbuster status. Seriously, this movie is kind of interesting in fits and spurts, but between the action and more entertaining moments, it’s very easy to step away or take a nap and catch up later.
The plot can be summed up rather quickly and without too much difficulty.
People are going to die…because. That’s the plot, or at least an oversimplified version of it, since the main premise of this movie is regret, which you might be feeling after you’re done watching. Cage, or Arana, is a former mercenary turned hotel owner who has a past that he can’t help but regret even as he moves forward in a sort of lackadaisical manner. He’s also not in a huge portion of the movie since the first part depicts the showdown between two snipers that is more or less kind of anticlimactic given that one of them is middle-aged and relies heavily on old tricks that don’t exactly work. As for the other sniper, well, he becomes less important shortly after this as two corrupt law enforcement agents take him into custody, kill him, and are then killed not too long after that. The ability to follow this movie’s sketchy premise is amazing if one can do it since the feature bounces around here and there in a manner that can only be described as clumsy even as it tries to be clever.
Once the story moves to the hotel, things…stay the same for the most part.
One would hope that the move to the hotel would mean that things are going to start moving in a manner that would capture the attention of the audience and keep them wanting more, but the sad fact of this movie is that while Cage isn’t seen to perform poorly or in the same fashion as always, he still isn’t enough to bring the lethargic feeling this movie brings back into the light. If anything, he keeps things right below the level of interest that might have allowed it to pep up a bit and keeps things rolling just beneath the surface by keeping everything as generic as possible. The fact that there’s a dead man in his lobby that the two incoming thugs, who are after someone in his establishment, as well as him, don’t appear bothered by is a good sign that this movie could have been made for a quick profit in the 80s or even the 90s. That might sound a little harsh, but the truth is that this movie is one of those that a lot of people should be able to recognize as a mailed-in attempt at something that could have loosely been called an appealing story had the writer decided to go back and, with their eyes open, find the glaring inaccuracies and inconsistencies that they’d included in the story.credit: Kill Chain
It’s still confusing why Nicolas Cage hasn’t returned to take on any bigger roles.
One could argue that he has come back and has been a hit much as he’s been in the past, and that would be accurate. But somehow, over the years, it feels as though he’s grown a little too comfortable catering to the VOD crowd and creating movies that are, for all intents and purposes, shadows of the greatness that he’s accomplished in the past. Yes, it’s true, he has been seen on the big screen again, and he has attempted to regain that status, and it’s fair to say that he might have done so. But one has to wonder if he’s going to remain a part of the VOD scene.
At the end of the day, Kill Chain is one of those that you might watch on a rainy day.
Seriously, it’s a movie that you can pause, come back to, and still remember everything about. It’s not complicated, even if it tries to be, and it’s not worth much more than the ninety-nine-cent rental that it might go for. If it goes for more than that, then you’re about to lose a few bucks.
Cage is a great actor, but he’s been a part of a lot of less-than worthwhile movies.