“Covers the complete roll call of shady underground characters” – Adam Frazier
Paul Walker, Cameron Bright, Vera Farmiga, Chazz Palminteri
Even a deep-end rating doesn’t come close to summing up the sheer brutality contained within Wayne Kramer’s new film “Running Scared”. So full on it is, it’ll have Tarantino’s hands bleeding from all the applause he’ll give it.
Paul Walker plays Joey Gazelle, loving family man and low-level mob flunky. Gazelle finds his life in disarray when he chooses not to follow his boss’ orders of disposing of a gun. The gun in question is a shiny, snub-nosed .38 with a white handle, which was used to erase a couple dirty cops from existence.
Gazelle stashes the piece in his basement, where we discover several illegal goodies and stacks of cash he’s keeping just incase loyalties turn sour and he needs a little collateral. This is where we meet Gazelle’s son, Nicky, played by Alex Neuberger, and his friend Oleg, who is played flawlessly by Cameron Bright.
Oleg steals the gun and uses it to shoot his abusive stepfather, who is not only eerily obsessed with John Wayne, but also just so happens to be connected to the Russian mob. The audience soon learns that the gun could mean Gazelle’s death if cops match the bullets at the crime scene to the weapon, it can be traced back to him, which won’t please his boss.
Gazelle must track down Oleg and get the gun before it falls into the wrong hands. What results is a feverish race against time that makes films like “Reservoir Dogs”, “Training Day” and “Scarface” look like an episode of “The Muppet Babies”.
This film covers the complete roll call of shady underground characters, from prostitutes and pimps to crack heads, Mafioso, and a pair of pedophiles that will scare the living hell out of you.
If you’re looking for something that goes out of its way to go over the top, then “Running Scared” is a good place to start.
One of the best action films of the year. You’ll enjoy every minute of it.
Reviewer : Adam Frazier