As a fan of Jason Statham, you cannot deny this man's charisma, even if he has to star in a movie that doesn't make much sense. Death Race, as an updated version of the 1975 original produced by Roger Corman, gets the Paul W.S. Andersen treatment (*alarm bells ringing*) and while I can't deny Statham's charismatic presence in the movie, what's totally baffling was Joan Allen's involvement in the movie as the prison warden and founder of the Death Race series of high-octane car sprints around the circuit of the isolated penitentiary. She has some unbelievably and unintentionally laughable lines, and the script just looks at getting the poised Allen to swear for novelty's sake.
The Original Death Race 2000 Trailer
For action junkies, there's nothing truly ground breaking or eye-popping here, as bullets get fired ad infinitum, and you'll probably yawn at the umpteenth car crash. It's like Speed Racer, but without the special effects, nor the cool toys. Supporting characters for sure you know are gonna get popped, and getting to see Robin Shou in a minor role here, really makes you wonder that so long as you're no longer flavour of the moment, you're gonna have to be prepared for some serious cameos spouting bad lines and trying to get away with it.
And just like how Transformers managed to get the fan boys all hot with temperatures rising, not over the transforming robots but over the sultry presence of Megan Fox, Death Race too had its own femme fatale, and I won't be a wee bit surprised if the only instructions issued by director Andersen to Natalie Martinez, is to "just act hot". She should be eye candy enough, fitting into skin tight cleavage baring clothing, to get the word of mouth going amongst the targeted demographics.
You can read my longer review of Death Race at movieXclusive.com by clicking on the logo below.