FILM REVIEW: Fire With Fire

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IOL Fire FWF_D003_00576.CR2


DIRECTOR: David Barrett

CAST: Josh Duhamel, Vincent Donofrio, Bruce Willis, Rosario Dawson, Vinnie Jones, Peter Curtis, Kevin Dunn, Julian McMahon


RUNNING TIME: 98 minutes

RATING: 2 stars (out of 5)

Theresa Smith

DO NOT LET the strong cast line up fool you, this is a damp squib.

Josh Duhamel is a firefighter, Jeremy Colman, who goes up against a white supremacist who threatens the life of his girlfriend. The firefighter’s girlfriend, that is.

Only problem, is… okay, first problem is that while Duhamel makes a cute firefighter, he does not convince as a desperate boyfriend at the end of his tether when he says: “I'm going to kill you, you SOB”.

For crying out loud, there is even a perfect Duhamel in the shower moment, but director David Barrett (Deep Blue Sea) doesn’t even show me a priddy ab for my trouble.

While he is a deliciously troubled soul in Law and Order: Criminal Intent, Vincent Donofrio is wholly unconvincing as white supremacist David Hagen. Bruce Willis pops up as a craggy cop, dogged in his pursuit of Hagen, and Vinnie Jones is a brute enforcer who likes hitting people while pontificating. Big surprise there.

Uneventful, with a script by numbers, silly continuity faults, technical goofs and clichéd characterisation, the film limps along to an anticlimactic ending. Complete with a huge fire with no smoke. Literally.

And that tinkly piano score? So does not enhance the mood. Or maybe it does. After all, the script contains no sense of urgency, so why should the music in any sense try to engender one?

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