The Trailer Park: Criminals Turned Action Stars

The new year appears set to kick off with a few films that feature criminals as heroic protagonists. In one movie, Sam Worthington volunteers to be the diversion to a heist that should prove his innocence. In the other action flick, Mark Wahlberg has to do one last heist to save his family. Both movies, unfortunately, are dated for release on the unluckiest day of the year.

‘Man on a Ledge’

Don’t you just love a movie title that carries a double meaning? This new action thriller with Sam Worthington, Elizabeth Banks, Jamie Bell, Edward Burns and Ed Harris is one such feature. Hitting theaters during bad month for movies (January), the trailer does fairly well at making the plot seem appealing and entertaining. But then again, it also looks like the whole thing could easily slip on a conveniently-placed banana peel (you know, the surprise twist) and fall flat on its face. The movie comes from relative newcomer Asger Leth. Even more interestingly, the script is by Pablo Fenjves, the ghostwriter for O.J. Simpson’s book and neighbor of Nicole Brown who testified at the Simpson criminal trial. I’ll wait for the Blu-ray, but that fact alone makes this movie a rather strange watch.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YWSdm4K-9_0

‘Contraband’

Speaking of potentially bad movies, Mark Wahlberg stars in another action thriller that’s also being released the same day as the one above – Friday the 13th. This one looks like standard crime heist material, where the best in the business is pulled back from retirement and forced to do one last job. This makes we wonder when we’ll ever see a movie where the criminal actually stays retired. Kate Beckinsale, as always, looks beautiful on screen, but doesn’t appear to do much except stand in the way or look fearful. Sadly, the same seems to go for Wahlberg here. Giovanni Ribisi plays an over-the-top villain with lots of tattoos. Entertaining popcorn flick? Possibly. Any good? Not very likely.

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