Kill ‘Em All review by Bobby Blakey
I am a longtime Jean Claude Van Damme fan and while I know not all of his films over the years have worked there are still some that come along that offer up a since of nostalgia and fun. His latest, Kill ‘Em All co-stars Peter Stormare, Maria Conchita Alonso, Daniel Bernhardt and his real life son Kris Van Damme, but does it offer up the kicking action fans want from him or will it fail to live up to the title?
Kill ‘Em All follows a mysterious stranger who arrives at a local hospital on the brink of death after a shootout. Then, a foreign gang brazenly comes to the hospital to hunt him down. His nurse, the sole surviving witness to the follow-up shootout, must face an FBI interrogation that unlocks a plot of international intrigue and revenge. This is a pretty simple premise that plays up kind of like Die Hard in a hospital as Van Damme fights to survive. There is plenty of action as expected with some decent fight scenes that should be able to keep fans happy although I am not a big fan of the way they are edited. Seeing that Bernhardt was in this film had me excited to see him and Van Damme square off and it was a lot of fun to watch although I was hoping it would be a lot more intense. Both guys have always delivered some great martial arts action so it is likely near impossible to live up to what I was hoping for.
One of the other fun scenes was getting to see both Van Damme’s with Jean Claude and Kris getting to square off. Kris has skills all his own, but has that glimmer of his father that makes it almost like seeing the fight scenes from Double Impact where Van Damme fought himself. Both Stormare and Alonso are relegated to just sitting out of the action in an interrogation situation that offers little more than a creative way to tell the story and attempt a twist that you will see coming pretty easily.
For hardcore fans of Van Damme like me this is a decent actioner with plenty of fights that is better than a lot of the films in his straight to rental market, but still not back to the quality of his earlier films. Either way I remain a hardcore fan and look forward to whatever he has to offer in the future and will likely check this one out again strictly for my love of seeing some Van Damage.