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Urban

'Running Scared'
(Paul Walker, Cameron Bright, et al / DVD / R / 2006 / New Line)

Overview: Joey Gazelle (Paul Walker) is a low level mob flunkie who get told to dispose of a gun used for killing some dirty cops. Joey however, hides the gun in the drywall of his basement instead of tossing them in the river. When Joey's 10 year-old son (Alex Neuberger) and his best friend, Oleg (Cameron Bright), witness Joey hiding some guns from a botched drug deal, Oleg steals the gun -- a snub-nosed .38 -- and shoots his abusive stepfather (Karel Roden) with it. Things would be bad enough if the stepfather didn't happen to be the nephew of a psychotic Russian mob boss (John Noble)... who happens to be in business with Joey's crew on a gasoline scam!

DVD Verdict: Joey Gazelle (Paul Walker) is a low level mob flunkie whose role is to dispose of "hot" guns from mob killings. We soon find out that Joey has been hiding these guns in the drywall of his basement, instead of tossing them in the river. When Joey's 10 year-old son (Alex Neuberger) and his best friend, Oleg (Cameron Bright), witness Joey hiding some guns from a botched drug deal, Oleg steals one of the guns -- a snub-nosed .38 (used to kill a dirty cop) -- and shoots his abusive stepfather (Karel Roden) with it. Things would be bad enough if the stepfather didn't happen to be the nephew of a psychotic Russian mob boss (John Noble)... who happens to be in business with Joey's crew on a gasoline scam. But now Joey's also got the surviving dirty cop (Chazz Palminteri) from the botched drug deal on his case... and that hot .38 out there on the street, changing hands in an underworld of freaks, pimps, hookers and pedophiles. As well as Oleg, who can connect Joey to the gun. And even if Joey can make it through the night, he's still got to answer to his wife (Vera Farmiga). Wayne Kramer has created a brutal thrill ride that holds you to your seat for the whole run time. It is a stylish, violent, Tony Scottish flick that takes you on a journey and leaves you with a headache after it is done. Tony Scott overuses the style but Kramer puts in places at the right times and it works great. He also has the great use of violence that is so over the top that you wince everytime something happens. It is that brutal and that weird. Kramer takes the kid that steals the gun through hell and brings him back. This is a new director who has shown that he has the skills and talent to stay in the business. He's no Tarantino and surely not in the same league as Sam Peckinpah whose films this one owes alot to in style and feel, but he's making a name for himself as one who can do good work. Oh, Paul Walker does a good job in it as well. I highly recommend this to people who like their films to be fun, but at the same time to have some flash and style. It is probably one of my favorite flicks of the year. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs and comes with the Special Features of:

Commentary by writer/director Wayne Kramer
"Running Scared: Through the Looking Glass" featurette
Storyboard comparisons
Limited Edition Graphic Novel

www.NewLine.com





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