Short Movie Review: Death Race

Death Race is stupid fun. Director Paul W.S. Anderson (Mortal Kombat, Alien vs. Predator, Resident Evil) and star Jason Statham (The Transporter, Crank, War) were already my go-to people for stupid fun movies so having them do something together is really just an all around time saver.

The premise is explained with a few lines of text that intro the movie: the year is 2012, stuff is bad, people yearn for new blood sports, thus convicts complete for their freedom in the Death Race. Everything after that is cars racing/shooting/exploding. Because the Death Race is the most popular televised sport of the near-future there are many elements of the sport that are simply explained as a tool for boosting ratings, which works as a great excuse for putting crazy stuff in your movie without worrying about whether it makes sense. A great addition for my overall Death Race experience was the inclusion of the trailer for the next Fast and the Furious movie beforehand (4 Fast 4 Furious?) If you are looking for explosions and cars with machine guns this is a fun movie, though it would likely not fare well on Jason’s “Would this be better as video game” test.

I used to play a video game (sort of like FZero) on my old Tandy 1000 which sounds exactly like death race. Your car had lazers, a battering ram, and Caltraps (which were like depth charges) all of which you would use to destroy the other cars, thus making the race easy to win. Part of the game was that a ganster would come to you and mark one of the racers and if you destroyed them during your race you’d get a crazy bonus. I loved that game which I can’t remember. The funny thing was that in looking at the Death Race Promo stuff, I completely assessed it using Jason’s video theory and was like, yikes, I have played this game. (I once tried to load it on a windows machine, but the processor was so fast, you couldn’t actually control the game at all. So I imagine that the game is lost to history :( )



I’m not a big fan of driving games, so probably this movie would be okay by me.