Director: Simon West
Cast: Jason Statham, Michael Angarano, Milo Ventimiglia
Release Date: Available on Blu-Ray & DVD March 31st
A Review By: Kevin Lovell
Film Rating: 7.5/10
Disc Rating: 8.5/10
Nick Wild (Statham) is a Las Vegas bodyguard with lethal professional skills and a personal gambling problem. When a sadistic thug beats his friend, Nick strikes back, only to find out the thug is the son of a powerful mob boss. Suddenly Nick is plunged into the criminal underworld, chased by enforcers and wanted by the mob. Having raised the stakes, Nick has one last play to change his fortunes…and this time, it’s all or nothing.
Nick Wild is a security consultant (or in simpler terms, a bodyguard) in the city of Las Vegas for those who are willing and able to pay for his protection and accompaniment in the dangerous city. When an old friend of Nick’s who he has a soft spot for asks him to investigate a wealthy man with criminal ties that brutally attacked her, he is warned by friends to stay away, but after continued persistence and descriptions of the evils done to her, Nick relents and helps her get the revenge she wants. Immediately following the brutal encounter Nick hits the blackjack tables intending to gather some quick cash and head out of town, but before long he finds himself being pursued and attacked on multiple angles and he soon realizes his only course of action may be to simply face the situation head on, whatever the consequences might be.
Simon West (Con Air, The Expendables 2) directed ‘Wild Card’ from a script by William Goldman which was adapted from Goldman’s own novel ‘Heat’ and West does a more than capable job at the helm, guiding this high stakes thriller with ease. The cast features a number of well known and pretty talented individuals including Jason Statham (who’s worked with West before on more than one occasion) at his best in the lead role, and with supporting performances by Michael Angarano , Milo Ventimiglia, Jason Alexander, Sofía Vergara, Anne Heche, Stanley Tucci, Dominik García-Lorido and more, all of whom deliver pretty decent performances for the most part in each of their respective roles.
‘Wild Card’ is a well done, fun and entertaining high stakes crime drama with some actual heart and character depth, plus of course some brutal and well constructed action sequences in which Statham delivers impressively as always. Occurring in the town of Las Vegas helps considerably in setting up not only many elements of the story, but the overall mood of this world that Nick lives in and the film does a pretty remarkable job of bringing that aspect to life in the background and letting it bleed into the surroundings so to speak. Overall, ‘Wild Card’ is a fun and entertaining thriller that is quite well done and features some pretty solid action sequences to boot; I would definitely recommend checking it out, especially genre fans.
The Blu-Ray release of ‘Wild Card’ features a full 1080p High Definition presentation utilizing the film’s original 2.40:1 Cinemascope Aspect Ratio. The video presentation looks pretty great as a whole, the colors are bright and clean, the backgrounds, movement and everything else on screen is consistently sharp and detailed, never suffering from any notable issues throughout, holding up admirably even during the fast moving and darker scenes. Overall, this is a pretty solid high definition video presentation that should have most folks more than satisfied.
The Blu-Ray release features a lossless 5.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack. This lossless multichannel soundtrack gets a number of chances to show what it’s capable of, especially during the action sequences, utilizing all five available channels to throw bullets or other elements whizzing past the viewer, while never causing any dialogue occurring simultaneously to become inaudible or negatively affected at any point. This 5.1 channel DTS-HD MA soundtrack is more than capable of what’s required of it and holds up admirably, it should have most quite pleased.
The Blu-Ray release of ‘Wild Card’ does include a few solid extras. Included on the release is an Audio Commentary with Director Simon West, in addition to a Script Vignette which runs just over 5 minutes in length and includes interviews and comments from the cast and the crew reflecting on the screenplay. Also included is a Behind the Scenes Featurette titled ‘Original Sin: Las Vegas and the Characters of Wild Card’ (running approximately 16 minutes) which includes Director Simon West and others discussing the setting and characters of the movie and their importance.