Now, I usually go into Seagal movies with an open mind. There’s going to be some good (if not entirely realistic) fight scenes, a scanty plot, and a lot of looking at Seagal’s haircut trying to figure out why someone would do that to themselves. But they’re generally good ‘popcorn’ movies – they fill you up whilst you’re watching them, but you could go something else an hour later. And it’s always fun to watch Seagal destroy in imaginative ways.
Last night I had the misfortune, and I have to say misfortune, to watch ‘Today You Die’ – and I have honestly never seen Seagal so pitifully bad.
Not only is his hair scarily lifeless (and there was debate about whether it actually had any relation to actual human hair at all), he mumbles more than usual whilst trying to lay down ridiculous ‘street-talk’ with his co-star, and the very scanty plot we’ve come to expect had Titanic sized holes which truly leave one feeling that Seagal should just give films up & go play in his band.
There’s some girlfriend who has visions, a female cop who’s trying to interrogate him in one scene then helping him stay a fugitive the next, there’s your typical bad cop who can’t act for shit, and the ubiquitous ‘criminal element’ that Seagal has to ‘get in’ with to complete his self appointed mission. Not to mention the oh so tacky setups, the totally stupid dialogue, and I believe I already mentioned the hair?
And to make matters worse, there’s a big fight scene with Seagal and about 5 guys – but the director shoots Seagal from the neck down, and the body shape of the guy is different! If you’re really quick you can catch a glimpse or two of the profile, which is definitely NOT Seagal! WHAT! Seagal not doing his own fight scenes?! Sorry to have to tell you, but it seems so. There are other clues too, the guy in the big scene (let’s call him SS1, Stunt Seagal 1) is quicker with his moves (yep!) and although Seagal’s got that fluidity, SS1 has the speed Seagal had way back in Under Siege.
If, like me, you’re a fan of Seagal movies – even if only so you can go ‘eewww!’ at the screen when he hurts some guy in a particularly imaginative way – leave this one the hell alone. Go watch Shoot ’em Up, you won’t be disappointed. This film’s way too bad, even when compared to Seagal’s recent pseudo-environmental celluloid efforts. Seagal shall be missed, but this movie does absolutely nothing to attest that he’s still a viable star. He should go the Chuck Norris route and retire gracefully, do the odd cameo here and there.
The sad truth of it is that the world has lost another action star. Seagal is (almost) done.