New low for Stallone in 'Bullet to the Head'

05:00 AM, Jan 31, 2013

Sarah Shahi, left, and Sylvester Stallone star in the gory and poorly timed 'Bullet to the Head.' Frank Masi, Warner Bros. Pictures/


Written By by Scott Bowles, USA TODAY

Bullet to the Head begins with a bang. Literally.

Alas, shell casings, switchblades and severed limbs are all that’s offered in this vile film (* out of four; rated R; opens Friday nationwide), whose sole redeeming quality is that it ends. Eventually.

From its questionable title to its putrid final scene, Bullet doesn’t so much feature blood and graphic violence as revel in it.

What, exactly, was star Sylvester Stallone’s motive here? He has done solid action films such as Rambo and First Blood, and showed real acting chops in Cop Land and, of course, Rocky.

This marks a new low for Sly. Gratuitously violent and brimming with slurs against Asians, this may be his first mean-spirited movie. It’s certainly his worst.

Based on an obscure French graphic novel, Bullet is a 91-minute excuse to pile up corpses.

Stallone plays Jimmy Bobo, a Louisiana hit man who is proud that, for all his killing, he has been arrested only 28 times and convicted twice. Too bad those convictions didn’t carry life sentences.

Just as the title promises, the movie opens with a bullet bursting through the opening credits straight to the face of moviegoers. It’s downhill from there.

When we meet Bobo, he and fellow thug Louis (Jon Seda) are posing as cops in order to break into a hotel room to divorce a nemesis from his brain. In a voice-over that channels Vin Diesel’s gravelly baritone, Jimmy explains that he has never much liked cops or troubled himself with conscience. The film rationalizes the bloodshed by explaining that he only murders men, never women and kids. And when Louis gets stabbed to death as payback, Bobo decides it’s time to … start killing.

As it happens, Washington, D.C., cop Taylor Kwon (Sung Kang) also lost a lowlife partner, a death that leads him to Bobo’s backyard.

The two begin what’s supposed to be an odd-couple pairing as they track their respective killers. For humor, Taylor reminds Bobo that he’s Korean, though that doesn’t stop Bobo from the racial insults, including calling the straight-laced cop Confucius.

That’s about as highbrow as Bullet gets. Humor takes a back seat to gore, including autopsy scenes that focus on open chest cavities. Perhaps director Walter Hill (48 Hrs., Red Heat) is looking for the film’s heart.

He doesn’t find it. Bullet moves from cadaver to cadaver with nary a whiff of conscience. Given the recent mass shootings of children and the gun debates that have followed, the film’s timing couldn’t be worse.

But this is not a movie that exercises discretion. Bullet’s final message comes from an unrepentant Bobo, who, after leaving a phalanx of bodies in his wake, muses that no one lives forever.

Here’s hoping the same holds true for this movie.

Bullet to the Head (1 star out of 4) begins with a bang, literally.

Alas, shell casings, switchblades and severed limbs are all that’s offered in this vile film, whose sole redeeming quality is that it ends. Eventually.

From its questionable title to its putrid final scene, Bullet doesn’t so much feature blood and graphic violence as revel in it.

What, exactly, was star Sylvester Stallone’s motive here? He’s done solid action films like Rambo and First Blood, and showed real acting chops in Cop Land and, of course, Rocky.

This marks a new low for Sly. Gratuitously violent and brimming with slurs against Asians, this may be Stallone’s first mean-spirited movie. It’s certainly his worst.

Based on a French graphic novel no one has read, Bullets is a 91-minute excuse to pile corpses.

Stallone plays Jimmy Bobo, a Louisiana hitman who is proud that, for all his killing, he’s been arrested only 28 times and convicted twice. Too bad those convictions didn’t carry life sentences.

Just as the title promises, the movie opens with a bullet bursting through the opening credits straight to the face of moviegoers. It’s downhill from there.

When we meet Bobo, he and fellow thug Louis (Jon Seda) are posing as cops to break into a hotel room to divorce a nemesis from his brain. In a voice-over that channels Vin Diesel’s gravel baritone, Jimmy explains that he’s never much liked cops or troubled himself with conscience. The film rationalizes the bloodshed by explaining that he only murders men, never women and kids. And when fellow Louis gets stabbed to death as payback, Bobo decides it’s time to…start killing.

As it happens, a Washington DC cop, Taylor (Sung Kang) also lost a scumbag partner, a death that leads him to Bobo’s backyard.

The two begin what’s supposed to be an odd couple pairing as they track their respective killers. For humor, Taylor reminds Bobo that he’s Korean, though that doesn’t stop Bobo from the racial insults, including calling the straight-laced cop Confucius.

That’s about as highbrow as Bullet gets. Humor takes a backseat to gore, including autopsy scenes that hold on open chest cavities. Perhaps director Walter Hill (48 Hrs., Red Heat) is looking for the film’s heart.

He doesn’t find it. Bullet moves from cadaver to cadaver with nary a whiff of conscience.

Given the recent mass shootings of children and the gun debates that have followed, the film’s timing couldn’t be worse. The studio responsible for Bullets is Warner Bros., and it should be taken to task for trying to dupe moviegoers into thinking this is entertainment. The studio took the high ground with last month’s Gangster Squad, pushing back the release date and re-editing a scene eerily similar to last year’s slayings in Aurora, Colo.

There’s no such discretion here. The film’s final message comes from an unrepentant Bobo who, after leaving a phalanx of bodies in his wake, muses that no one lives forever.

Here’s hoping the same holds true for this movie.

Bullet to the Head

(1 star out of 4)

Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Sung Kang, Sarah Shahi

Director: Walter Hill

Rating: R for strong violence, bloody images, language, some nudity and brief drug use.

Running time: 1 hr., 31 minutes

Distributor: Warner Bros.

Opens nationwide Friday.

Bullet to the Head (1 star out of 4) begins with a bang, literally.

Alas, shell casings, switchblades and severed limbs are all that’s offered in this vile film, whose sole redeeming quality is that it ends. Eventually.

From its questionable title to its putrid final scene, Bullet doesn’t so much feature blood and graphic violence as revel in it.

What, exactly, was star Sylvester Stallone’s motive here? He’s done solid action films like Rambo and First Blood, and showed real acting chops in Cop Land and, of course, Rocky.

This marks a new low for Sly. Gratuitously violent and brimming with slurs against Asians, this may be Stallone’s first mean-spirited movie. It’s certainly his worst.

Based on a French graphic novel no one has read, Bullets is a 91-minute excuse to pile corpses.

Stallone plays Jimmy Bobo, a Louisiana hitman who is proud that, for all his killing, he’s been arrested only 28 times and convicted twice. Too bad those convictions didn’t carry life sentences.

Just as the title promises, the movie opens with a bullet bursting through the opening credits straight to the face of moviegoers. It’s downhill from there.

When we meet Bobo, he and fellow thug Louis (Jon Seda) are posing as cops to break into a hotel room to divorce a nemesis from his brain. In a voice-over that channels Vin Diesel’s gravel baritone, Jimmy explains that he’s never much liked cops or troubled himself with conscience. The film rationalizes the bloodshed by explaining that he only murders men, never women and kids. And when fellow Louis gets stabbed to death as payback, Bobo decides it’s time to…start killing.

As it happens, a Washington DC cop, Taylor (Sung Kang) also lost a scumbag partner, a death that leads him to Bobo’s backyard.

The two begin what’s supposed to be an odd couple pairing as they track their respective killers. For humor, Taylor reminds Bobo that he’s Korean, though that doesn’t stop Bobo from the racial insults, including calling the straight-laced cop Confucius.

That’s about as highbrow as Bullet gets. Humor takes a backseat to gore, including autopsy scenes that hold on open chest cavities. Perhaps director Walter Hill (48 Hrs., Red Heat) is looking for the film’s heart.

He doesn’t find it. Bullet moves from cadaver to cadaver with nary a whiff of conscience.

Given the recent mass shootings of children and the gun debates that have followed, the film’s timing couldn’t be worse. The studio responsible for Bullets is Warner Bros., and it should be taken to task for trying to dupe moviegoers into thinking this is entertainment. The studio took the high ground with last month’s Gangster Squad, pushing back the release date and re-editing a scene eerily similar to last year’s slayings in Aurora, Colo.

There’s no such discretion here. The film’s final message comes from an unrepentant Bobo who, after leaving a phalanx of bodies in his wake, muses that no one lives forever.

Here’s hoping the same holds true for this movie.

Bullet to the Head

(1 star out of 4)

Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Sung Kang, Sarah Shahi

Director: Walter Hill

Rating: R for strong violence, bloody images, language, some nudity and brief drug use.

Running time: 1 hr., 31 minutes

Distributor: Warner Bros.

Opens nationwide Friday.

Bullet to the Head (1 star out of 4) begins with a bang, literally.

Alas, shell casings, switchblades and severed limbs are all that’s offered in this vile film, whose sole redeeming quality is that it ends. Eventually.

From its questionable title to its putrid final scene, Bullet doesn’t so much feature blood and graphic violence as revel in it.

What, exactly, was star Sylvester Stallone’s motive here? He’s done solid action films like Rambo and First Blood, and showed real acting chops in Cop Land and, of course, Rocky.

This marks a new low for Sly. Gratuitously violent and brimming with slurs against Asians, this may be Stallone’s first mean-spirited movie. It’s certainly his worst.

Based on a French graphic novel no one has read, Bullets is a 91-minute excuse to pile corpses.

Stallone plays Jimmy Bobo, a Louisiana hitman who is proud that, for all his killing, he’s been arrested only 28 times and convicted twice. Too bad those convictions didn’t carry life sentences.

Just as the title promises, the movie opens with a bullet bursting through the opening credits straight to the face of moviegoers. It’s downhill from there.

When we meet Bobo, he and fellow thug Louis (Jon Seda) are posing as cops to break into a hotel room to divorce a nemesis from his brain. In a voice-over that channels Vin Diesel’s gravel baritone, Jimmy explains that he’s never much liked cops or troubled himself with conscience. The film rationalizes the bloodshed by explaining that he only murders men, never women and kids. And when fellow Louis gets stabbed to death as payback, Bobo decides it’s time to…start killing.

As it happens, a Washington DC cop, Taylor (Sung Kang) also lost a scumbag partner, a death that leads him to Bobo’s backyard.

The two begin what’s supposed to be an odd couple pairing as they track their respective killers. For humor, Taylor reminds Bobo that he’s Korean, though that doesn’t stop Bobo from the racial insults, including calling the straight-laced cop Confucius.

That’s about as highbrow as Bullet gets. Humor takes a backseat to gore, including autopsy scenes that hold on open chest cavities. Perhaps director Walter Hill (48 Hrs., Red Heat) is looking for the film’s heart.

He doesn’t find it. Bullet moves from cadaver to cadaver with nary a whiff of conscience.

Given the recent mass shootings of children and the gun debates that have followed, the film’s timing couldn’t be worse. The studio responsible for Bullets is Warner Bros., and it should be taken to task for trying to dupe moviegoers into thinking this is entertainment. The studio took the high ground with last month’s Gangster Squad, pushing back the release date and re-editing a scene eerily similar to last year’s slayings in Aurora, Colo.

There’s no such discretion here. The film’s final message comes from an unrepentant Bobo who, after leaving a phalanx of bodies in his wake, muses that no one lives forever.

Here’s hoping the same holds true for this movie.

Bullet to the Head

(1 star out of 4)

Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Sung Kang, Sarah Shahi

Director: Walter Hill

Rating: R for strong violence, bloody images, language, some nudity and brief drug use.

Running time: 1 hr., 31 minutes

Distributor: Warner Bros.

Opens nationwide Friday.

Bullet to the Head (1 star out of 4) begins with a bang, literally.

Alas, shell casings, switchblades and severed limbs are all that’s offered in this vile film, whose sole redeeming quality is that it ends. Eventually.

From its questionable title to its putrid final scene, Bullet doesn’t so much feature blood and graphic violence as revel in it.

What, exactly, was star Sylvester Stallone’s motive here? He’s done solid action films like Rambo and First Blood, and showed real acting chops in Cop Land and, of course, Rocky.

This marks a new low for Sly. Gratuitously violent and brimming with slurs against Asians, this may be Stallone’s first mean-spirited movie. It’s certainly his worst.

Based on a French graphic novel no one has read, Bullets is a 91-minute excuse to pile corpses.

Stallone plays Jimmy Bobo, a Louisiana hitman who is proud that, for all his killing, he’s been arrested only 28 times and convicted twice. Too bad those convictions didn’t carry life sentences.

Just as the title promises, the movie opens with a bullet bursting through the opening credits straight to the face of moviegoers. It’s downhill from there.

When we meet Bobo, he and fellow thug Louis (Jon Seda) are posing as cops to break into a hotel room to divorce a nemesis from his brain. In a voice-over that channels Vin Diesel’s gravel baritone, Jimmy explains that he’s never much liked cops or troubled himself with conscience. The film rationalizes the bloodshed by explaining that he only murders men, never women and kids. And when fellow Louis gets stabbed to death as payback, Bobo decides it’s time to…start killing.

As it happens, a Washington DC cop, Taylor (Sung Kang) also lost a scumbag partner, a death that leads him to Bobo’s backyard.

The two begin what’s supposed to be an odd couple pairing as they track their respective killers. For humor, Taylor reminds Bobo that he’s Korean, though that doesn’t stop Bobo from the racial insults, including calling the straight-laced cop Confucius.

That’s about as highbrow as Bullet gets. Humor takes a backseat to gore, including autopsy scenes that hold on open chest cavities. Perhaps director Walter Hill (48 Hrs., Red Heat) is looking for the film’s heart.

He doesn’t find it. Bullet moves from cadaver to cadaver with nary a whiff of conscience.

Given the recent mass shootings of children and the gun debates that have followed, the film’s timing couldn’t be worse. The studio responsible for Bullets is Warner Bros., and it should be taken to task for trying to dupe moviegoers into thinking this is entertainment. The studio took the high ground with last month’s Gangster Squad, pushing back the release date and re-editing a scene eerily similar to last year’s slayings in Aurora, Colo.

There’s no such discretion here. The film’s final message comes from an unrepentant Bobo who, after leaving a phalanx of bodies in his wake, muses that no one lives forever.

Here’s hoping the same holds true for this movie.

Bullet to the Head

(1 star out of 4)

Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Sung Kang, Sarah Shahi

Director: Walter Hill

Rating: R for strong violence, bloody images, language, some nudity and brief drug use.

Running time: 1 hr., 31 minutes

Distributor: Warner Bros.

Opens nationwide Friday.

Bullet to the Head (1 star out of 4) begins with a bang, literally.

Alas, shell casings, switchblades and severed limbs are all that’s offered in this vile film, whose sole redeeming quality is that it ends. Eventually.

From its questionable title to its putrid final scene, Bullet doesn’t so much feature blood and graphic violence as revel in it.

What, exactly, was star Sylvester Stallone’s motive here? He’s done solid action films like Rambo and First Blood, and showed real acting chops in Cop Land and, of course, Rocky.

This marks a new low for Sly. Gratuitously violent and brimming with slurs against Asians, this may be Stallone’s first mean-spirited movie. It’s certainly his worst.

Based on a French graphic novel no one has read, Bullets is a 91-minute excuse to pile corpses.

Stallone plays Jimmy Bobo, a Louisiana hitman who is proud that, for all his killing, he’s been arrested only 28 times and convicted twice. Too bad those convictions didn’t carry life sentences.

Just as the title promises, the movie opens with a bullet bursting through the opening credits straight to the face of moviegoers. It’s downhill from there.

When we meet Bobo, he and fellow thug Louis (Jon Seda) are posing as cops to break into a hotel room to divorce a nemesis from his brain. In a voice-over that channels Vin Diesel’s gravel baritone, Jimmy explains that he’s never much liked cops or troubled himself with conscience. The film rationalizes the bloodshed by explaining that he only murders men, never women and kids. And when fellow Louis gets stabbed to death as payback, Bobo decides it’s time to…start killing.

As it happens, a Washington DC cop, Taylor (Sung Kang) also lost a scumbag partner, a death that leads him to Bobo’s backyard.

The two begin what’s supposed to be an odd couple pairing as they track their respective killers. For humor, Taylor reminds Bobo that he’s Korean, though that doesn’t stop Bobo from the racial insults, including calling the straight-laced cop Confucius.

That’s about as highbrow as Bullet gets. Humor takes a backseat to gore, including autopsy scenes that hold on open chest cavities. Perhaps director Walter Hill (48 Hrs., Red Heat) is looking for the film’s heart.

He doesn’t find it. Bullet moves from cadaver to cadaver with nary a whiff of conscience.

Given the recent mass shootings of children and the gun debates that have followed, the film’s timing couldn’t be worse. The studio responsible for Bullets is Warner Bros., and it should be taken to task for trying to dupe moviegoers into thinking this is entertainment. The studio took the high ground with last month’s Gangster Squad, pushing back the release date and re-editing a scene eerily similar to last year’s slayings in Aurora, Colo.

There’s no such discretion here. The film’s final message comes from an unrepentant Bobo who, after leaving a phalanx of bodies in his wake, muses that no one lives forever.

Here’s hoping the same holds true for this movie.

Bullet to the Head

(1 star out of 4)

Stars: Sylvester Stallone, Sung Kang, Sarah Shahi

Director: Walter Hill

Rating: R for strong violence, bloody images, language, some nudity and brief drug use.

Running time: 1 hr., 31 minutes

Distributor: Warner Bros.

Opens nationwide Friday.