Tuesday, May 17, 2016
The Asian Connection (2016) Movie Review
Greetings valued Dan's Movie Report readers. Today's new film is the Daniel Ziriili directed flick "The Asian Connection' starring Steven Seagal and Michael Jai White. After interviewing Daniel, I must admit I was looking forward to this DTV film with exuberant anticipation.
'The Asian Connection' opens with a bang, a robbery in which a small bank is hit, and over 200,000 USD are taken. The bank is supposed to be located in Cambodia, but it is Thailand, no matter, as the action in the scene is close quarter, intense and definitely sets the tone.
The money of course has an owner, and Steven Seagal, is obviously not very happy about losing large sums of cash.Seagal here has some really fast hands in the action sequences.
The highlights of 'The Asian Connection' are the beautiful sweeping cinematography and the frantic action. Lush landscapes and creative camera angles frame the movie with a unique look. At times viewers are 'in' the action, and at other times, the audience is hovering above, almost in spy cam mode. Very creative.
Speaking of the action, the opening sequence is amazing with the bank robbery. Absolutely love the action acting work of Byron Gibson. Watch also for cool action work from Ron Smoorenburg and Dean Alexandrou, all three are in 'Time Rush'. There is gun fighting, chases, the usual heist material, but the beginning and the end are highlights for action.
Michael Jai White, is the soft spoken character Greedy Greg. Michael is really upped his acting game to match his fighting as evident in last year's 'Skin Trade'. I hope to see more of him in dramatic roles, as the years progress.
My one major issue with 'The Asian Connection' is the female lead characters. While they did have major parts in the film, their performance seemed to be not up to the higher standards of the other leads. Of course, Pim Bubear, will only improve with more lead roles, but in 'The Asian Connection' she just did not have the natural intensity to match with her co-stars. That being said, I am of course interested in her newer material, sure she will improve.
I say this as watching the two other Daniel Zirilli directed films 'Time Rush' and 'Crossing Point' the female leads were very strong, and fully matched wits and intensity with their male counterparts. Perhaps I went in with higher expectations, but I feel the need to point out the inconsistencies, in character and acting.
The odd Seagal interludes with younger female co stars is a bit off putting, but, he is like a mentor, so in 'The Asian Connection' it makes sense, and in actuality, this is one of his better recent DTV flicks. Daniel is a really good director for indie action, he does maximize the specific traits. Seagal worked hard for Daniel in 'The Asian Connection' it translates on screen. Plus the greatest single funny scene in any Seagal flick as anger gets the best of him when he tosses over a full table of food, obviously he was pissed!
Overall this is a decent flick, I would definitely say a strong rental. 'The Asian Connection' rates a 6.5 out of 10.