Professional wrestling star the Rock, who was such a lump of flesh in The Scorpion King, proves surprisingly light on his feet in The Rundown, demonstrating charm and humor as well as the requisite toughness. Beck (the Roc... more »k), a repo-man for deadbeats, is sent to South America to find a treasure hunter (Seann William Scott) who's seeking a priceless golden idol--which the local head honcho (Christopher Walken) would like to get his hands on as well. Add in the lovely but dangerous barmaid with a secret (Rosario Dawson), and Beck has some obstacles to overcome. The plot of The Rundown isn't anything special, but the script is enjoyably clever and reasonably coherent; the capable cast keeps things lively; and the movie's relaxed but sinewy pace sets it apart from the frantic floundering of recent action flicks--kudos to director Peter Berg (Very Bad Things). A surprisingly fun flick. --Bret Fetzer« less
You Have Two Options: Option A- Go See The Rundown.
Daniel V. Reilly | Upstate New York, United States | 09/30/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Option B- I MAKE YOU go see The Rundown. The Rundown marks the arrival of Dwayne Johnson, A.K.A. "The Rock" as a bona-fide movie star. As Beck, a "Retrieval Expert" who longs for a simpler life as a chef, he displays for the first time on film the humor and charisma that won him "Millions....and MILLIONS!" of fans in the WWE. Dispatced to the South American town of El Dorado (Called Hell Dorado by the locals) to fetch Travis Walker (Seann William Scott), the wayward son of his shady boss, Beck gets more than he bargained for. He finds Travis easily enough, but getting him home might pose more of a problem. Not only does Travis not WANT to go home, but local land baron Hatcher (The hilariously nutty Christopher Walken, at his eye-popping best here) won't LET him go...At least not until Travis finds a mythical golden idol for him. The Rock vs. an army of gun-toting slave-drivers......Place your bets! As I said earlier, The Rock is awesome in his role, bringing a mix of self-effacing humor and quiet strength to the mix, balancing out the potentially irritating Scott's whiny character. Walken is, as always, a joy to watch. His diatribe about The Tooth Fairy is worth the price of admission alone, and hearing him say "Oompa-Loompa" is sure to go down in history as one of my all-time favorite movie lines. Director Peter Berg shows himself to be equally comfortable with comedy and action; He keeps the film moving along at a brisk pace, and the action scenes are simply stunning- Not only are the fights choreographed beautifully, but the action is easy to follow, with none of the choppy editing and shaky photography that has ruined many an action movie. The Rundown is just what it portrays itself as: A fun buddy picture. I had a blast, and so did everyone else in the theater. If you're in the mood for action, The Rundown is a sure bet. If you smell what I'm cookin'....."
Great action flick, great laughs
Shelley Gammon | Kaufman, Texas USA | 10/25/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Praise for The Rock's performance in this film is not overrated. He has come into his own in this film and established himself as a true actor and not just a muscle-bound cretin. The Rock plays Beck, a polite leg-breaker for a low-life loan shark with big-time "clients" such as NFL super stars. In a business where violence is his back-up when diplomacy doesn't work, Beck loathes guns and has a deeper desire to run his own 5-star restaurant and leave this knuckle-busting life behind him.His boss gives him one last assignment before he cuts him loose and gives him the restaurant of his dreams... the mission: bring back his son Travis (Seann William Scott). His father has pulled his son's butt out of a sling so many times, he is reeling him in to face the music.Beck heads to South America to retrieve Travis in what he believes will be a quick grab and flight back to the U.S. Unbeknownst to Beck, Travis is seeking a priceless golden idol and a local slave driver (Christopher Walken) is keeping tabs on Travis so he can steal the treasure from him as soon as he finds it. Hatcher (Walken) runs a gold-mining operation, employing the local populous at disgustingly pitiful pay and slave-like hours and treatment. It's a real shanty-town, but filled with sophisticated cameras and other surveillance equipment and gun-toting thugs.There is non-stop butt-kicking and far-out choreography through-out the film. So many scenes are so proposterous, it borders on insulting your intelligence, but things happen so fast and you get such a good laugh along the way, you really just sit back for the ride. There are a couple of scenes involving monkeys that are real gut-busters for laughs - but they used African baboons for these scenes - not animals you'd ever encounter in the western hemisphere. Anyone who watches the Discovery Channel even once in a while will roll their eyes at these scenes, but still laugh.A local bar-keep named Mariana (Rosaria Dawson) adds an additional twist. Is she just a bar-keep, or is there something else going on... and how does she keep her hair looking so nice while running for her life in the middle of a humid rain forest?Seann William Scott has proved that he is much more than the "Stifler" character in the "American Pie" series... he is a talented actor and can portray a range of characters and emotions. This film will probably be his launching pad into more serious roles in the future.There is some language, but nothing beyond what you'd see on NYPD Blue on TV, limited in-your-face violence... just butt kicking, and no sex scenes - so the movie is fairly family-safe. On the overall first-time-viewing enjoyment meter, I'd give this film 5 stars, but on the "would I ever want to see it again" meter, I give it half a star."
Much better than you'd expect
Yossarian | Durham, NC USA | 05/11/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Well, I wasn't expecting a great deal from this film. In fact, I probably wouldn't have seen it at all if it hadn't gotten surprisingly good reviews. The Rock was pretty forgettable in 'The Scorpion King', although not terrible, but he puts in a great performance here. Tasked with the retrieval of a wayward son, he ends up in a three (or four) way hunt for a mysterious golden idol, along the way enountering everything from homicidal gold miners to jungle rebels to packs of angry monkeys. It is one funny movie, and the action scenes are great. Most importantly, the cast has both charisma and quality, and the dialogue isn't nearly as stilted as you'd expect in a typical action film. You can tell they all had fun making the movie, perhaps because it was actually filmed in Hawaii. Regardless, you should check this out even if you have doubts about it, because it will win you over."
Neat Action Flick Shows The Rock's Stuff!
Barron Laycock | Temple, New Hampshire United States | 04/15/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This movie is truly Rock-solid; the inimitable pro-wrestler turned actor admirably struts his stuff here in terms of sheer muscular star power and heavyweight charisma, and proceeds to turn the Amazonian jungle upside down in the process. This is certainly no dramatic masterpiece, but all of the cast are excellent in this incredible action movie, especially Christopher Walken, doing a turn as a witty yet egomaniacal villain who simply isn't prepared for the consequences as `Beck' (the Rock) arrives on his doorstep in his part of the jungle to retrieve the errant son of a gangster he is indebted to. The murder and mayhem that ensue make up two hours of first class entertainment as we find Rock against the world, and the world getting the worst part of the deal. The movie is wonderfully photographed, and the comic moments flow from the opening sequences, when Beck step into a crowded bar to retrieve a debt from a pro football player. The ensuing madness is so well choreographed and played out that it is entirely believable despite the fact that it is strictly super-heroics that the character Rock plays has to deliver to punch, elbow, and drop-kick the whole offensive line of a pro football team in pursuit of his man. Likewise, the bar-room fight scene that sets up the rest of the movie once Beck arrives in Brazil is a study in athletic make-believe, so far out it is both fun and amazing to watch, as long as you can suspend your critical faculties long enough to not laugh out loud at the silliness of some of the supposed stunts. But the Rock never disappoints, and he always entertains! Indeed, like some of the better early Schwarzenegger movies (e.g. `Predator'), the wit and winsome qualities of both the characters and the plot are indeed quite entertaining despite the fact we all know who is going to win, and thus have very little doubt as to how things will progress as the tale spins along toward its conclusion. Also, one can see that Rock is rising very quickly to fill the action hero void once held by Arnie and Sly Stallone. He has a lot of screen presence, and is a joy to watch in action. What's more, he seems to handle himself very well, and is quite believable on the screen, which is no small feat given the cartoon-like aspects of the story line. All in all, a great action flick, and one you will likely want to include in your video library. Enjoy!"
Great action and lots of fun
S. Bradford | Arlington, VA USA | 06/16/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I enjoyed this movie on DVD and it is even better on HD DVD. Great picture quality with the lush jungle scenes and lots of bass in the soundtrack.
The movie is also very entertaining with lots of action and humor. The Rock plays a goon that has been sent to retrieve his bosses son played by Seann William Scott (a.k.a Stiffler from American Pie). The interaction between them is hilarious. The great Christopher Walken plays the bad guy and he is his classic self. His awesome dialogue (I wonder how much was ad-libbed?) and his pants pulled up to his drooping breasts add the finishing touches to this terrific movie. I think this is the Rock's best movie and a sequel must be made!"