1 StarGame of Death is ideal fodder for those Redbox rental kiosks sprouting up everywhere. It features a former action-star, it barely runs 85 minutes in length, and once the realization sets in that Death is a bomb; you don’t feel bad about wasting a buck on the nightly rental. Game of Death is a ponderous so-called action-thriller with little of either, the film’s only real distinction is that it was the final project completed before star Snipes’ prison term.
The movie has been directed by Giorgio Serafini (Ambushed), who botches the job early on and never recovers. He favors unnecessary post-production tinkering, flash frames, color imbalances, to give the picture a ‘big’ look. These ‘artistic’ touches are distracting but the story line isn’t hard to follow, which is due to the absolute bare minimum of plotting.
Marcus (Snipes) is an elite CIA operative working undercover as the personal bodyguard for a corrupt arms dealer in Detroit. During the sting the mark goes into cardiac arrest, leading to an emergency room visit. In the hospital Marcus is attacked by a group of ex-teammates who now want the target and his money for their own nefarious plans. The story is bookended by a conversation between Marcus and a neighborhood pastor (Ernie Hudson). The scenes between the two are much better than anything that happens in the intervening eighty minutes.
There was a period not long ago Wesley Snipes was one of he biggest box-office draws in the country, then he slipped into the B-Movie world with middling results, along with The Marksman this lame film is the star’s worst. Among the film’s many casualties is go to B-Movie vet Gary Daniels is rendered bland and useless. Even die-hard Snipes aficionados will be disappointed.
Director: Giorgio Serafini
Stars: Wesley Snipes, Zoë Bell, Gary Daniels