‘Vendetta’ is a 2015 prison thriller directed by Jen and Sylvia Soska. The film was produced by WWE Studios and received a limited theatrical release through Lionsgate Films.
After Jocelyn Danvers (Kyra Zagorsky) is murdered by Victor Abbot (Paul Donald Wight II aka Big Show), her police officer husband Mason (Dean Cain) swears revenge. After killing Victor’s brother Griffin (Aleks Paunovic), Mason is sent to the same prison and from there begins to execute his plan to take down his nemesis. As he does so, Mason discovers that the prison Warden Snyder (Michael Eklund) is working both sides with plans to profit off Abbot’s crimes and Mason’s vendetta.
The Soska Sisters are primarily known for horror films, so this was a bit of a change of pace for them doing an action thriller. With this in mind, I was very curious but was not disappointed in their genre switch. They definitely peppered in their horror chops with the fight scenes where the blood and gore abound aplenty, but overall, I thought that the story was very well done. They did seem to juggle a lot between Mason’s revenge story and the conspiracy going on in the prison, but I thought they did a good job of balancing it.
As for the acting, I thought everyone did a good job. Dean Cain was at the top of his game bringing the movie in a perfect circle as Mason. For me, I grew up watching Cain as Superman, so seeing him play this dark, vengeful character was a bit of an unusual experience, but it proved his acting chops for me.
The rest of the cast did an excellent job as well. Big Show is well-known as a professional wrestler and he is no less intimidating playing the criminal mastermind. The same goes Michael Eklund. He did a good job with his role. I do think some of his lines were delivered a bit awkward, but that might have been a writing problem more than an acting issue. I also enjoyed Kyra Zagorsky. Her role was short, but it was pivotal to kickstart the plot and I thought she did a good job in that regard.
Now, the movie did have a few plot points that got muddled. Earlier, I noted that the Soska Sisters did a good job of juggling the main plot and subplot, but I did find a few places where I was asking, “why is [this character] putting up with that?” This happened once or twice, but it was not a dealbreaker.
Bottom line, while Vendetta does have a few faults, it is an enjoyable movie with an entertaining plot. Sure, it gets bloody at times, but it is the perfect film to relax and munch on popcorn.
PARENTAL CONCERNS: Foul language, Blood violence
FAVORITE QUOTE: The last dead body I stood over was your brother’s.
Check out the trailer below:
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