Scorched Earth review by Bobby Blakey
As a martial artist I love all things in the genre especially the movies. Ex-MMA fight and American Gladiator Gina Carano has been one of my favorites for years. Long before she became a househould name I was following her career and even have the honor to be connected through training under Muay Thai Master Toddy in Thailand like she did. She was on a role with her transition into the action movie world with roles in Deadpool, Fast & Furious 6 and the underappreciated Haywire to name a few. Now she is back with her latest flick Scorched Earth co-starring Ryan Robbins, Stephanie Bennett, John Hannah, Dean S. Jagger, and Alisha Newton, but does it bring her usually bad ass action style or will it be as contaminated as the Earth it features?
Scorched Earth follows the future after the planet has suffered an environmental collapse. The air became dangerous to breathe, the water became toxic, and billions of people died. Generations later, mankind has finally re-established a rudimentary society in which bounty hunters roam the wasteland in search of wanted eco-criminals. Now bounty hunter Attica Gage, is faced with the bounty of a lifetime: bringing down the ruthless outlaw, Thomas Jackson. Gage infiltrates Jackson’s gang, and everything is going to plan until she meets a slave girl who reminds her of her dead sister. With her loyalty to only herself now tested, Gage learns that there might be more to life than just survival. While I was eager to see this film just due to Carano’s involvement I had no confusion of the type of film I was going into. Her latest foray into the action world reminded me a lot of the Van Damme flick Cyborg, which I love by the way, but makes sure to do its own thing.
The story is simple enough with a post-apocalyptic world that has made it feel part futuristic and part western that had the makings to be a great action flick. While I enjoyed for alone to see Carano kicking ass it never went all in on the action as much as I had hoped. Sure I was probably hoping for so much more in expectation, but it just failed to fully utilize Carano’s skill level as a fighter. I know that not every film starring a martial arts star has to focus on that, but that doesn’t mean I don’t want it too. There are a couple of fight scenes letting her cut lose, but for the most part it sticks to the gun play that is fine, but mostly generic. Carano set the bar high with her first outings and has been doing mostly these straight to home release flicks lately, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t worth checking out.
Carano set the bar high with Haywire, which I think is her best film to date as well as In the Blood, but getting to see her on the screen doing her thing still makes me happy. She continues to bring strong female characters to the screen no matter what you think of the film and shows that she deserves to be there. If you like old school action flick of the 90s then you will likely have a good time with Scorched Earth when it hits Blu-ray and DVD on March 6th from Cinedigm.