Wesley Snipes slogs through this tired action-horror drag from WWE Studios
One of the pleasures of “The Expendables 3” — and there really weren’t that many — was seeing Wesley Snipes back in action on the big screen.
Snipes, who recently spent several years behind bars due to some pesky tax paying malfunctions, still looks great on screen and moves with an action hero’s agility. He could perhaps be a star again, “The Expendables” seemed to say, if only someone would give him the right vehicle.
“Armed Response” is not that vehicle. This is low-budget, action-horror trash that belongs in the gutter. It was made by WWE Studios, which routinely pumps out shlock films so their talent roster can dabble in film work between ring bouts. (This one co-stars former heavyweight champ Seth Rollins, who is much stiffer on camera than he is in the squared circle.)
The story centers on a group of soldiers — played by Snipes, Rollins and Anne Heche (Anne Heche!), among others — who get locked inside a military complex that has a mind of its own. Soon they’re experiencing strange hallucinations as their military pasts come back to haunt them, both mentally and physically. (One character gets his arms ripped off when the walls grow limbs and tear him apart. Ouch.)
Snipes, for his part, looks bored off his rocker. He barely gets to move, and spends most of the movie looking like he’s making to-do lists in his head. When he finally gets to be physical and show off some of his moves, the sequence is far too brief.
John Stockwell, who many moons ago made the sweet cross-cultural teenage romance “Crazy/Beautiful,” knows he’s working with a pile of junk and doesn’t get in the way. That Snipes comeback is no closer than it was three years ago.
Rated R for strong violence, some grisly images, and for language
Running time: 93 minutes