Man, it really pains me to write this review. John Woo is a personal favorite director of mine. Who knows more about action shoot’em ups than Woo? Apparently, Woo has gone the way of Ridley Squat. Whatever they had, is now gone. Or maybe the Hollywood system has to ruin every Woo movie? I’m going to go with that. His latest is Silent Night.
Silent Night is a really straightforward revenge action movie. A normal guy sees his toddler son gunned down by accident by Mexican gang bangers fighting each other. He gives chase, gets into it with one of them, and is promptly shot in the throat for his efforts.
This starts the gimmick of the film. I knew from the trailer he wouldn’t be talking. It’s even in the title. What I didn’t know is that there is no fucking dialog in the entire film except background audio from radios and newscasts. This is not as cool or enjoyable as Woo may have thought it would be. Clearly inspired by The Great Silence, the hero can’t make a peep. Yeah, he pulls off the emotional arc of the hero and all that but it’s not fun. Your mileage may vary.
The actions is just OK. Too much of it happens with the hero driving a car and shooting out the window. I guess that beats the endless copying of John Wick and no one expects realism from a John Woo action movie anyway. But, God help me I was bored. I’m sorry Mr. Woo.. It hurt me to say that more than it hurts you.
The story wraps up the way most John Woo Hong Kong action movies end. I just didn’t care by then.
Go watch Hard Boiled instead.
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