Reviewed by: Daniel Thompson
|Featuring:||Gerard Butler (Kable), Chris “Ludacris” Bridges, Michael C. Hall, Kyra Sedgwick, Logan Lerman, Milo Ventimiglia, Alison Lohman, Zoe Bell, John Leguizamo, Amber Valletta, Terry Crews, Keith David, Aaron Yoo, Efren Ramirez, Johnny Whitworth, Sam Witwer, Ashley Rickards, Mimi Michaels, Jonathan Chase, Kate Mulligan, Joseph D. Reitman, Christine Price, Jade Ramsey, Brighid Fleming, Kisha Sierra, Nikita Ramsey, Daniel J Gonzales, Sadie Alexandru, Pamela Finley, Dylan Kenin, Jarvis W. George, Michael-David Aragon, Stephanie Mace, Henry Hayashi, Jack Brunacini Jr., Scott C. Voss, Josie Iller, Dan Strakal, Med Abrous, Jai Stefan, Ramsey Moore, Jera Askey, Julie Barbarito Craig, Hayley Derryberry, Christian Di Salvo, Sean Halvorson, Jamie Haqqani, William E. Marshall, David Mate, Breanna Perera, Paul J. Porter, Don Smith, Lewie Wickham, Paul Zepeda|
|Director:||Mark Neveldine, Brian Taylor|
|Producer:||Lionsgate, Lakeshore Entertainment, Gary Lucchesi, James McQuaide, Neveldine, Michael Paseornek, Eric Reid, Tom Rosenberg, David Rubin, Taylor, Skip Williamson, Richard S. Wright|
“In the near future, you don’t live to play… you’ll play to live.”
False accusations of murder, controlling life, and the definition of reality all sound like interesting subjects for a movie. In fact, one would think that any film with these elements would require multiple layers as well as a good deal of depth. Leave it to the film makers of “Gamer” to prove that theory wrong. In this shallow and poorly made effort starring Gerard Butler of “300” fame, these intriguing elements come together as a mishmash of gore, sex, and almost incoherent dialogue leaving a film that is easily the worst movie this reviewer has seen all year.
The story takes place in the near future where gaming has been taken to a completely different level. Because of the development of some high tech nano-chips that are injected into the brains of humans, gamers can now pay to dictate the actions of another person. They do so in a game called ‘Society’ where they can make people act in various social settings, and also in a game called ‘Slayers’ where death row inmates are put in war scenario ‘battles’ and are controlled by gamers. If a slayer survives 30 consecutive battles, they are given their release from prison.
No one has ever earned their freedom from Slayers, but player Kable (Butler) is three battles away from doing so. The creator of this technology, Ken Castle (Michael C. Hall), is a billionaire who revels in the idea of one human controlling another. It seems there is a hidden history between Castle and Kable regarding the invention of the technology, and the ethics behind its use.
The problems with “Gamer” are numerous. First of all, the story is anything but airtight. All plot reveals are either completely obvious, or seem to be made up on the spot by one character spouting off dialogue that just so happens to explain what just happened. The action sequences are shot with the ‘shaky camera’ effect but don’t mount any tension in the process. The acting is at poor at best. Gerard Butler’s work here, which consists mostly of staring really hard, makes his work in “300” look Oscar-worthy. John Leguizamo is fine, but only seen in about three scenes. Chris ‘Ludacris’ Bridges and Kyra Sedgwick are cardboard cutout characters, at best.
The positives in the film are very few; in fact, there is only one, I can’t think of more than one. That bright spot belongs to Michael C. Hall. Known more for his roles on television shows like “Dexter” and “Six Feet Under,” Hall is diabolical as the villain and does the most with his limited screen time.
Even more disconcerting for moviegoers is the amount of objectionable material in “Gamer.” The ce in the film is omnipresent, racking up a body count well into triple digits. The sexual content is extreme, with many brief glimpses of nudity mostly coming in the ‘Society’ game where people are “controlled” to have sex.
For all the garbage you endure in “Gamer,” you will get very little that is redeemable. With extreme content and poor film making, there isn’t a good reason to see this film. Skip “Gamer” at all costs.
Violence: Extreme / Profanity: Extreme / Sex/Nudity: Extreme
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