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Overall Rating
2

Awesome: 10.2%
Worth A Look: 6.12%
Average: 2.04%
Pretty Bad: 36.73%
Total Crap44.9%

4 reviews, 25 user ratings


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Half Past Dead
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by Doug Bentin

"Rigor mortis sets in"
1 stars

Titling Steven Seagal’s “Half Past Dead” is an act of false confidence. Half past hell. Rigor mortis set in long ago.

It’s somehow hard to believe that it’s been only a decade since Seagal scored big with “Under Siege,” his one and only near-classic. Of course, that fine film was directed by Andrew Davis (“The Fugitive”) and featured Tommy Lee Jones in a tongue-in-cheek villain role.

But Seagal was easy to accept as an action hero then. Those were the days when he was appearing with David Letterman, announcing that he had worked for the CIA, but then saying, with that serious look that touched every inch of his face but the bits around the corners of his eyes, that he wasn’t permitted to discuss what he’d done.

Now, he doesn’t have much to offer action fans, unless they enjoy watching 51-year-old vegetarians waving their arms around in the air. Seagal has grown so paunchy, most of his martial arts moments are photographed from the waist up. I know how I did it, but how does a vegetarian get so heavy? Is sugar a vegetable?

In his latest, Seagal plays Sascha Petrosevich, a Russian with no accent and a character the ethnicity of whom plays absolutely no part in the story. He might just as well have been from Lansing, MI. Sascha is partners-in-crime with Nick (rapper Ja Rule), who brings Sascha to his gang boss. Once in the gang, they are busted by the FBI in the form of a female agent who looks to be in better shape than Sascha is. The two crooks bag big time at New Alcatraz, a prison location selected for this movie because its isolation is supposed to remind viewers of “Under Siege.” Besides, it worked for “The Rock.”

Now, the prison is housing an old mob guy who is about to be executed. He knows the secret location of $200 million in stolen gold bars, but he refuses to reveal where they are. A former department of corrections desk jockey called 49er One (Morris Chestnut) and his gang break into the prison (that’s the gimmick, get it?) to rescue the mob guy so he can then be tortured into telling them where the money is. Given the look of the high tech equipment needed to bust into Alcatraz, including a state-of-the-art helicopter gunship, 49er One is going to need to find the gold just to break even.

Have you ever thought about that when you watch one of these high tech heist movies? If these morons have enough money to finance one of these gigs, what the hell are they doing it for?

Anyway, Sascha and Nick get loose in the prison and Sascha becomes the bad guys’ now-you-see-him-now-you-don’t pain in the butt, just like Seagal did it in “Under Siege,” which, while a good actioner, was still a rip off of “Die Hard.” After all the sound and fury, Sascha does very little to stop the villains, who do manage to escape the island with the guy they came for. They are foiled, of course, but that’s no thanks to the big guy.

Nia Peeples is along as 49er Six of Nine, or whatever her damn name is. You have no idea how moronic I feel inputting those silly names. And you think reviewing movies isn’t work.

Where was I? Oh, yeah. Anyway, Peeples is at least easy on the eyes. And there’s nothing much funnier than watching a chunky, out of shape male action star playing opposite a sleek young woman in tight spandex, and knowing that if the script ever calls for them to fight it out, it will also call for him to win. And you thought Harry Potter was a fantasy.

“Half Past Dead” contains a minimum of dialogue and a maximum of stuff exploding. Either the bad guys brought with them or the prison contained bazookas, ground to air missiles, hand grenades, and more automatic weaponry than you’d need to attack or defend any seven prisons. Stuff gets blowed up real good, bubba.

I can’t think of a single reason for paying money to see “Half Past Dead.” Put the lid on the coffin and bury this one before it starts stinking even worse.

link directly to this review at http://www.efilmcritic.com/review.php?movie=6340&reviewer=405
originally posted: 01/25/07 05:22:37
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User Comments

11/10/11 matthew thompson dalldorf The title describes this movie pretty well 2 stars
6/23/09 Dave This movie is hilarious, awesome B grade, I still talk about it 7 years later. Hilarious 5 stars
5/18/08 PAUL SHORTT IF ITS ANOTHER REGURGITATED ACTION FILM YOU'RE AFTER, THERE'S NO BETTER MOVIE THAN THIS 1 stars
9/23/07 The Real Segal Masterpiece. I could not have seen this coming. 5 stars
8/27/07 OutforaCookie One of the worst movies to hit the big screen... Seagal is worse than ever 1 stars
6/03/06 Rossi Lester made the movie. Lester was THE MAN! 4 stars
3/28/06 Brian Meyer Give it a chance, if nothing else it is entertaining. 4 stars
2/13/06 Anthony Rent it when nothing new is out 2 stars
6/15/05 R move over, Matrix! 1 stars
5/17/04 Jack Sommersby Bombastically uncouth, but it entertains. 3 stars
5/14/04 Stuart Time to retire aight! 2 stars
12/17/03 God CRAP! 1 stars
10/14/03 Ingo Sucks bigtime. 1 stars
10/11/03 iffet arkan STEVEN SEAGAL !! He is AWESOME again !! 5 stars
9/08/03 Sugarfoot Hey Seagal call 1800-03 -Jenny! 2 stars
5/17/03 georgiana phelps lots of action 5 stars
4/06/03 wayne oh my goodness 1 stars
3/10/03 Erykk This "film" was the equivalent of shaving my ass with a cheese grater. 1 stars
2/14/03 Andrew Carden Despite Good Action Scenes, The Film Is Far Too Confusing and Boring 2 stars
1/16/03 Diana Flores It is a little better than Fast and the Ferious but Ja Rule is so so so so so so so hot in 5 stars
12/21/02 SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!! SUCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 1 stars
11/22/02 Danielle The movie was pretty good 4 stars
11/21/02 steven seagall i starred in this movie, and even i think it ... 1 stars
11/17/02 Uncle Salty Are you kidding me? ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?? 1 stars
11/16/02 wintermute Don't expect Oz or Lockup - and Seagal really needs to lay off the junk food and cue cards 2 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  15-Nov-2002 (PG-13)

UK
  N/A

Australia
  20-Feb-2003


Directed by
  Don Michael Paul

Written by
  Don Michael Paul

Cast
  Steven Seagal
  Morris Chestnut
  Matt Battaglia
  Ja Rule
  Bear
  Kurupt



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