Far Cry (2008) Movie Review

FarCryPosterThe unadulterated anger directed towards German filmmaker Uwe Boll is, for the most part, warranted. Simply put: The man doesn’t make good movies, and people tend to hate him for it. However, despite Boll’s dedication to impossibly bad taste and his penchant for taking popular videogames and completely reworking their core storylines to suit his ambitions, I am hopelessly drawn to the man’s body of work. No matter how wretched or downright pathetic his latest endeavor may be, I always seem to come back for more whenever the Gods of Celluloid graciously allow him to create another feature-length abomination. I like to call it cinematic masochism. Old-fashioned stupidity works, too.

Boll’s latest direct-to-video release, the 2008 buddy action flick “Far Cry,” is, perhaps, his most accessible film to-date, though probably not for the reasons the universally-loathed filmmaker had originally intended. As a life-long fan of silly Italian shoot-em-ups and anything released by Media Home Entertainment during the 80′s, I can genuinely appreciate the film’s inherent goofiness without succumbing to embarrassing fits of nerd-infused rage. Well, not entirely, anyway. I am a bit of a geek, and I do have my limitations.

FarCry1From what I’ve read, the plot for Crytek’s popular first-person shooter “Far Cry” and that found lurking at the bottom of Uwe’s cinematic interpretation are, in fact, a little different. Although Jack Carver (Til Schweiger), his sidekick Val (Emmanuelle Vaugier), and the villainous Dr. Krieger (Udo Kier) are pretty much the same as their 3D counterparts, the storyline has been considerably altered and rearranged. Gone are the nuclear weapons and the climatic showdown inside a live volcano, replaced instead with genetically altered soldiers and a finale that appears to have been filmed behind a nearby Home Depot.

For those who haven’t played the game, allow me to put a finer point on the plot: Jack Carver is an ex-military type who spends his retirement giving boat tours to whiny, whale-obsessed Americans. However, when beautiful investigative journalist Valerie Cardinal (Vaugier) hires our scruffy hero to ferry her to a mysterious island frequented by secretive military personnel, Jack’s restful world is suddenly turned upside down. In one fell swoop, Val is kidnapped, Jack’s boat is destroyed, and everyone with an automatic weapon wants him dead. In order to rescue the girl and escape with his hide intact, Jack will have to resort to skills he hasn’t utilized in years.

FarCry2Although my credibility will surely take a punch to the groin for admitting as much, I have to say that “Far Cry,” while not a great movie by any stretch of the imagination, is a pretty enjoyable slice of cheap, throwaway cinema. The key ingredient is Michael Roesch, Peter Scheerer, and Masaji Takei’s script, a two-napkin masterpiece that feels as though it were conceived by a homeschooled 13 year-old who just discovered his father’s secret stash of Chuck Norris and Don “The Dragon” Wilson movies. It’s “Romancing the Stone” by way of PM Entertainment, complete with a short, overweight guy dishing out comic relief. Bad comic relief, at that.

Personal taste aside, I can clearly understand how “Far Cry” may rub people the wrong way. The acting is downright pathetic, the humor is impossibly lame, and Uwe Boll’s direction is as sharp as someone who just started watching movies yesterday. Fans of the video game will probably be the most offended, as it retains little of what made the shooter so much fun in the first place. Of course, there’s plenty of non-stop action to be had, though it’s only impressive if you stopped watching movies before the Wachoskis created “The Matrix.”

If you’re already a card-carrying member of the I Hate Uwe Boll club, “Far Cry” probably isn’t going to change your mind on the subject. At all. Those of us who enjoy such empty-headed productions, on the other hand, may enjoy the director’s old-school approach to action filmmaking. Keeping the podunk performances from grating your fragile nerves is crucial, especially once Chris Coppola’s character is introduced about halfway through the picture. Compared to Boll’s previous efforts, it’s a little shinier than most, but that really isn’t saying much. Unless you’re a glutton for punishment, a fan of hokey cinema, or a rabid follower of the good doctor’s work, you may want to skip this one altogether. However, trying to decipher why, exactly, Michael Paré shows up for one brief scene could be considered great fun in certain circles.

Uwe Boll (director) / Michael Roesch, Peter Scheerer, Masaji Takei (screenplay)
CAST: Til Schweiger … Jack Carver
Emmanuelle Vaugier … Valerie Cardinal
Natalia Avelon … Katja Chernov
Udo Kier … Dr. Lucas Krieger
Michael Paré … Paul Summers
Craig Fairbrass … Parker


FarCryDVD



About Todd Rigney

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Todd was raised on a steady diet of Hollywood blockbusters, late-night Cinemax programming, and USA’s “Up All Night,” which may explain why his taste in movies is more than a little questionable. When he isn’t providing news and reviews for Beyond Hollywood, he can be found lounging lazily on his couch, perched in front of his television, or dwelling in places where direct sunlight can be easily avoided. He's happily married, in his 30's, and totally badass. If you'd like to reach Todd, you can follow him on Twitter or send him email/scoops to todd (at) beyondhollywood.com.

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  • http://www.originalgeekspodcast.com/ Dedpool aka Jiinx

    So this is better than “In the Name of the King?” Really? It sounds horrible, and I was giving “King” the title of best Uwe Boll film and I didn’t even see it all. I am to this day confused why every videogame company doesn’t have an anti-Boll department to keep their games from being rapped with the “Se7en” sex toy. Wow. Just Wow!

  • Dedpool

    So this is better than “In the Name of the King?” Really? It sounds horrible, and I was giving “King” the title of best Uwe Boll film and I didn’t even see it all. I am to this day confused why every videogame company doesn’t have an anti-Boll department to keep their games from being rapped with the “Se7en” sex toy. Wow. Just Wow!

  • http://www.moviescapitalreview.com/ Jack

    wow i really found this to be an interesting read; I love this film.thanks for sharing

  • http://www.moviescapitalreview.com Jack

    wow i really found this to be an interesting read; I love this film.thanks for sharing

  • http://www.twitter.com/CirenzSonG Loc

    Hmmm…I was surprised, ACTUALLY, by his other, Non-Game Related Written adaptation of the Vietnam War-set TunneL Rats, that he wrote, directed and Produced…

    Now u watch THAT film, and you’ll be surprized by how weLL it was acted, and as such, wiLL also explain why Michael Pare shows up “again” in this movie, in another role perhapz…But I’m guessing they got along, well enough, to warrant His return, in this Flick, albeit, in a brief “cameo” of sorts…MichaeL is actually pretty solid and serious in 1978 TunneL Rats, which is the FULL Name of the Movie…

    Twas Pleasantly Surprised, and my first, perhaps ONLY Doc Uwe BoLL Film…and Lastly, I won’t watch anything of his work, again, perhaps, if its another adaptation of a video game, but this was something he wrote himself, from Scratch, studying the texts of how the Guerrilla Viet Cong were using Human-Sized Underground Tunnels to Fight back…Nice…Sad film, where you Sympathize with everyone…I’d include it in your Pantheon of War Films, even alongside Platoon or Francis Ford’s Apoc Now…Seriously, it’s that welcomely GOOD…

    Serious is well played, the Drama is above average…and EXCELLENT EVEN, for an UWE BOLL Flick…Seriously, if u can get ur hands on that, it’s a Fresh NEW Perspective on the “American” War, as it’s call’d in Vietnam, hehe…

    Yeupz, anyhow, unlike the Oliver Stone or whoever the fuck wrote Stanley Kubrick’s movie…FuLL MetaL Jacket…Sux baLLS for Dramatizing a LiL’ Sniper GurL as a bad@SS…Total fucking garbage…This TunneL Rats is MORE accurate as to how the Viet Cong were able to “defeat” the EVER so Reluctant Soldiers of the Vietnam-War…Sad 2 say, there are no winners…at least, not in this war…

    But, by the end of the film, I wanted MORE!?

    Can u believe that shit?

    Seriously…

  • http://www.twitter.com/CirenzSonG Loc

    Hmmm…I was surprised, ACTUALLY, by his other, Non-Game Related Written adaptation of the Vietnam War-set TunneL Rats, that he wrote, directed and Produced…

    Now u watch THAT film, and you’ll be surprized by how weLL it was acted, and as such, wiLL also explain why Michael Pare shows up “again” in this movie, in another role perhapz…But I’m guessing they got along, well enough, to warrant His return, in this Flick, albeit, in a brief “cameo” of sorts…MichaeL is actually pretty solid and serious in 1978 TunneL Rats, which is the FULL Name of the Movie…

    Twas Pleasantly Surprised, and my first, perhaps ONLY Doc Uwe BoLL Film…and Lastly, I won’t watch anything of his work, again, perhaps, if its another adaptation of a video game, but this was something he wrote himself, from Scratch, studying the texts of how the Guerrilla Viet Cong were using Human-Sized Underground Tunnels to Fight back…Nice…Sad film, where you Sympathize with everyone…I’d include it in your Pantheon of War Films, even alongside Platoon or Francis Ford’s Apoc Now…Seriously, it’s that welcomely GOOD…

    Serious is well played, the Drama is above average…and EXCELLENT EVEN, for an UWE BOLL Flick…Seriously, if u can get ur hands on that, it’s a Fresh NEW Perspective on the “American” War, as it’s call’d in Vietnam, hehe…

    Yeupz, anyhow, unlike the Oliver Stone or whoever the fuck wrote Stanley Kubrick’s movie…FuLL MetaL Jacket…Sux baLLS for Dramatizing a LiL’ Sniper GurL as a bad@SS…Total fucking garbage…This TunneL Rats is MORE accurate as to how the Viet Cong were able to “defeat” the EVER so Reluctant Soldiers of the Vietnam-War…Sad 2 say, there are no winners…at least, not in this war…

    But, by the end of the film, I wanted MORE!?

    Can u believe that shit?

    Seriously…

  • JSnows

    I watched a while back and imo Boll’s standard hasn’t budged an inch. It’s crap! The acting is crap, the story fits on a post-it note and the special effects add nothing at all.

  • JSnows

    I watched a while back and imo Boll’s standard hasn’t budged an inch. It’s crap! The acting is crap, the story fits on a post-it note and the special effects add nothing at all.