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Overall Rating

Awesome: 6.76%
Worth A Look: 18.92%
Pretty Bad: 13.51%
Total Crap: 17.57%

6 reviews, 38 user ratings

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Walking Tall (2004)
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by Chris Parry

"The Rock does Billy Jack, and the director catches an early flight home."
1 stars

Picture this: A Hollywood producer comes up to you in a cafe and says, "Here's a suitcase full of money. I've got a bad 70's movie I want you to remake, and because of the likelihood of a SAG strike, the only people we can get in the film are a professional wrestler and a guy from Jackass. You in?" Of course you're in. Don't even try to lie to me that you'd refuse such an offer. You'd be all over it like a Lindsay Lohan/Hilary Duff catfight.

So The Rock is an army guy who has been away winning medals for a few years, who just wants to come home and live peacefully with his family and friends (among them, Johnny "Jackass" Knoxville). But wouldn't you know it? While he was gone, the Sheriff and the local casino-owner (Neal McDonough) have taken over the town, filling the kids' veins with drugs and bilking the township of their hard-earned dollars at the craps table. What's a muscled-up, adrenaline-fueled killing machine to do?

"Casinos are all the same. A room full of fake boobs and real assholes."

Well, if you've seen any 1970's revenge flick - take your pick from Deathwish, Billy Jack, or heck, even the original Walking Tall film from 1973 - then you know exactly what comes next. The good guy gets seven shades of shite kicked out of him, then he recovers and comes back to kick everyone's ass. Oh hell, did I just give away the ending? Well, if you've ever seen an action film, you already know how this thing ends, but what's important in movies like this isn't storyline. What is of paramount importance is the action quotient. Unfortunately, Walking Tall is action light.

"This is MY town!"

Yeah, there are a couple of scenes where The Rock is either having his butt handed to him or doing the handing himself, but they just don't really excite an audience. "Ooh, he smashed a window with his two-by-four. Hold me." Where the film could have been a lot of fun was if it had gone completely 70's and made this a riff on the old good cracker/bad cracker revenge films that the decade was so remembered for. Instead, the storyline has all the feel of such films (IE: it's the kind of stuff only a guy with a screen door on his trailer could love), without ever really trying to be different, or updated, or better then them.

The Rock begins to show that drama isn't his thing, Johnny Knoxville delivers some giggles, but none that will stand out in your mind, Neal McDonoough continues to waste his Band of Brothers cred by playing goofy bad guys (though admittedly well), and Ashley Scott does the Daisy Duke eye candy routine to the level you'd expect - she looks fine but can't act worth a shinola.

This was a rush film cranked out to beat a predicted actors strike, and it really shows. The film is barely 75 minutes long if you don't watch every second of credits, the explosions are blah, the acting weak, and the dialogue... well, see for yourself:

Bad guy: "What's wrong with my headlights?"
Good guy: [smash!] "It's broken."

The headlights is broken? Boths of thems?

A disposable movie with a disposable cast based on a disposable original - there's really nothing worth recommending here, especially since the other recent Rock action vehicle, The Rundown, is such an enjoyable piece of movie popcorn.

You see it there, sitting in the new release section... you feel compelled to rent it. Just don't.

link directly to this review at
originally posted: 06/04/04 10:52:52
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User Comments

9/16/17 morris campbell walking out boring as fuck 1 stars
1/04/16 Charles Tatum So far removed from orig, I can't believe they call this a "remake." 3 stars
10/23/15 david froman average action flick 3 stars
9/17/12 roscoe one of the rock's worst 2 stars
8/05/10 Eveline not good boring 1 stars
7/28/10 action movie fan silly imitation of much better 1974 film-joe don baker was much better 2 stars
9/20/09 Nifty Swift Lizzy Lame Ass 'Rock For Brainz' really is a joke! Put that eyebrow down jerk... 1 stars
8/13/08 Brenda If your friend owns it borrow it good. otherwise meh 3 stars
4/16/07 johnnyfog The Rock looks silly, but I liked the other characters. 3 stars
2/23/07 Caz Amazing action, great acting! 5 stars
11/19/06 R.W.Welch Not quite up to the 70's schlock classic, but OK. 3 stars
11/16/06 David Pollastrini not great, not terrible 4 stars
10/16/06 james woooooooo 5 stars
8/14/06 Sharon this movie was pretty good! and Quigley johnny knoxville is not an annoying sidekick! bitch 4 stars
4/02/06 JRE where's the point? 3 stars
9/02/05 Tom Burns A very cool movie. The rock is awesome! 5 stars
5/27/05 Quigley completely devoid of anything good. mindless sex, annoying sidekicks, and bull-crap clique 1 stars
4/12/05 scott einig bull-crap at its highest! it can't get lower, folks 1 stars
4/09/05 B Kniprath It is hard to remake a movie from 30 years ago. 4 stars
3/29/05 indrid cold Actually not that bad if you go in with low expectations. 3 stars
1/16/05 keithers.. The Rock was always a better actor then he was a wrestler 3 stars
12/25/04 Freddy lame ending. like that white dude could give the rock so much trouble 2 stars
10/17/04 Dan Good movie, loved the action sequences, especially the shotgun one with knoxville :D 4 stars
10/04/04 Amy Carter best movie I've seen this year!!! 5 stars
4/28/04 Lona Collins the movie was pretty good a little short but thats alright, because I am a huge rock fan! 4 stars
4/27/04 4x4 Wife dragged me to it instead of 50 First Dates. Can't complain to much. 3 stars
4/15/04 rojo The Rock is better than this. 3 stars
4/10/04 Bob Brady entertaining, lot of action good flick 3 stars
4/08/04 lucas good movie not best but worth a look 4 stars
4/08/04 KingNeutron Rock gets better with each film, but Knoxville almost steals the show 3 stars
4/07/04 PiaHawk the rock is so hot, i dont care wat he does. if he just stood there, i would have loved i! 5 stars
4/06/04 Krysta Buttons the movie was definatley a boys movie, to much violence for me thank you. 1 stars
4/05/04 taohgist The Rock is a wrastler, always will be, the story is good, 20 years ago 4 stars
4/04/04 Randy Blah 2 stars
4/03/04 Jiz Good but forgettable. Rundown had better action, but it also had SWS and that monkey scene 3 stars
4/01/04 Ayatolla of Rockinrolla Not as good as Rundown, but Rock and Knox connection were very good 3 stars
3/28/04 Christina saw a free screening last week. not bad. 4 stars
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  02-Apr-2004 (PG-13)
  DVD: 28-Sep-2004



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