In the very near future, ultra-rich elite competitors can pay to hunt condemned criminals on a secluded island for sport. This time out, the company behind this competition select a former police detective who has proven to be very difficult to kill. What was true then remains just as true now, this sixty-something grandfather still not ready to call it a day.
Apex reteams star Bruce Willis with co-writer/direct Edward Drake (Breach, Cosmic Sin) for the third time. Another in a seemingly never-ending line of The Most Dangerous Game clones, there’s not a lot that’s positive to say about his self-aware thriller. The action isn’t very good. The plot is severely undercooked. The characters are cartoonish caricatures who across the board (save one notable exception) make almost zero impression.
Made on a noticeably minimal budget and indifferently cut together and shot, there’s almost nothing here to applaud. There is a haphazardness to the filmmaking that’s rather unfortunate, and as blandly forgettable and uninspiring as both Breach and Cosmic Sin were, they least had the appearance of directorial competence.
That feels like a harsh statement and is likely a bit unfair. I don’t know what the behind-the-scenes goings-on were in regards to this one, but I imagine something significant took place during the shoot. There are key scenes that look like they were shot at multiple locations with actors not even in the same room even though they were attempting to kill one another. The visual effects appear unfinished as if money just vanished and there weren’t the funds to complete them.
I will say that actor Neal McDonough – who actually gets top billing over Willis – is an absolute hoot as the amoral sociopath Dr. Samuel Rainsford. He’s not so much giving a performance as he is freely devouring his screen time as if this is the last motion picture he would ever appear in and wanted to make the most of every second. With a better script, and in a more cohesively assembled film, I feel like he could have done something amazing, and part of me is a tiny bit sad we’ll never know if there’s any truth to that statement.
There are a couple of decent chuckles regarding Willis’ character and his colorful history (insert Die Hard joke here), and the film is a reminder that after making a solid impression in Jack Reacher actor Alexia Fast has been pretty much wasted in everything she’s appeared in since. Otherwise, I don’t have a lot more I want to say about Apex. It’s bad. Let’s just leave it at that and call it a day.
Apex is presented on a 25GB Blu-ray MPEG-4 AVC Video with a 2.39:1 1080p transfer.
This Blu-ray features an English DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack and includes optional English SDH, French and Spanish subtitles.
No extras are included with this release.
Apex is a bad movie. This Blu-ray release looks and sounds fine, but I still can’t recommend anyone pick it up, even as a curiosity. Leave it in the bargain bin to collect dust.