Gamer C-It's a war out there in the near future. Men with technically advanced weaponry are leaping, crawling, whirling as they shoot without end. Explosions erupt, bombs shriek down, throwing clouds of flames & dirt into the air. Killing, mayhem, bodies & pieces of bodies are strewn everywhere amid total wreckage & carnage. Glass shatters, showering profusely. The camera frenetically leaps around while edits are so rapid it's difficult to focus anywhere for long. The melee is frightening, noisy, and great in scope.
And that's all before the opening credits. You know it's going to be another ear-shattering 95-minutes, another loud & fast action flick spiked with vulgar & profane language to the point of being ludicrous. Says one good guy to a woman, "Quit menstruatin' an' tell me we f'---in have a game agin." Actually, the women are more creative with their use of profanity, but it comes in spurts, punctuating with sneers as they slip around in skimpy bits of clothes (when they keep it on) while they service the men in this fantasy world of high-concept gaming between the Slayers & death row volunteers.
No virtual players in these games; these are real people who control real people to manipulate them into dangerous situations and gleefully enjoy the resulting carnage.
Focus is on one really tough guy, Kabel (Gerard Butler at his brutal grimiest), who becomes a Slayer, hoping eventually to return to his wife, (Kyra Sedgwick),now prostituting for a living, and their little girl. Doing his creepy best is the boss of it all, Ken Castle (Michael C. Hall) who has no intention to permit Kabel to win his freedom; thus, amidst all this mayhem & sexual game play, the real conflict holds right down to the final expected, egregious bloody & deafening concussions.
You can root for Kabel and, on occasion, for his wife & child; you can hiss Castle and even stare in open-mouthed surprise as he breaks into one of the many pointless red herring moments (including Kabel using vomit & urine to fuel a truck - honest!), doing a dance routine with a group of his cohorts.
You can admire the curious mix of film techniques that leap unaccountably from natural filming in color to graphic, stark black/white, as you spin dizzily from the rapid cuts and endlessly throbbing music. You can, by a stretch of the imagination, think, as some have, that writers/directors Mark Neveldine & Brian Taylor have once again created a grizzly, creepy, blood bath movie with tongue in cheek, and chuckle. Or you can, as I did, find the flick an unwholesome ego trip filled with unwholesome, thoroughly, needlessly, disgusting situations that the pair thrust upon you, to make you hate yourself as you sit there in your comfortable air-conditioned darkness and allow them gleefully to rub your nose in the muck. If you pays your money, you takes your choice.