xXx: Return of Xander Cage

‘Let me simplify it for you. Get the girl, kick some ass and try to look dope while you’re doing it.’

It would seem the line by Samuel L Jackson’s, Augustus Gibbons has saved me quite a lot of work. Yes, it looks as though this entry in the xXx franchise will be glued to this repeatedly tested formula. But will it play out well enough to land on it’s feet in the box office?

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Perhaps it’s off trend to wrap it up one movie short of a trilogy nowadays, but, after xXx: State of the Union, starring Ice Cube (instead of Vin Diesel), tanked at the box office, clearly going back to what worked before was the obvious option.

Diesel is reprising his role from the original movie (apparently he didn’t die…), playing the extreme sports athlete, Xander Cage. In the trailer, we see Cage called upon to save the world from a gang that have procured a device that can control all the world’s military satellites (yup, it’s that easy). As their leader, Xiang, is played by martial arts movie legend Donnie Yen and also features Tony Jaa (a rising MA movie legend), they are naturally a bunch of ‘very dangerous guys’. That’s why they need Xander, because he can jump off a tower and ski down a slope without snow…and beat up some bad guys whilst doing it. I think we can all agree that the plot is simply a barebones platform to produce a movie full of crazy-impossible, gravity-defying stunts, adrenalised fight scenes, sexual innuendo and slick one-liners. This certainly looks to be an action aficionado’s slice of good, good pie.

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What makes this trailer look more promising than the previous two movie combined is the addition of Xander’s team. With Bollywood star Deepika Padukone playing Serena Unger, she certainly adds some (ahem) ‘spice’ to the team interplay. We also get Rory McCann (Games of Thrones) playing Tennyson ‘the Torch’, Nina Dobrev (The Vampire Diaries) as Rebecca “Becky” Clearidge and Ruby Rose (Orange is the New Black) as Adele Wolff. This troupe looks like an A-Team-esque, monster energy sponsored, PG-rated Suicide Squad.

This could work!

As we’ve seen from the likes of Marvel’s Avengers, team movies, when the characters have the right dynamic, can take the action sequences to another level. Let’s hope that’s the case here.

I wouldn’t have pegged D.J. Caruso (Disturbia, I am Number Four) as the natural selection for directing this film but maybe he can add something different to the usual action movie formula.

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From what the trailer shows, we’ve potentially got a well-shot, actioner playing with some trending ideas. And, if the audience are suitably wowed, I’m sure well see the FOURTH in the trilogy (anyone else remember a certain Orange advert starring Sean Astin? No? Just me then).

In a nutshell and unlike the movie, we are quietly excited about this ‘not-so-soft’ reboot.

xXx: Return of Xander Cage is due for release 20th January 2017

While you wait, download and enjoy some xXx posters below…

 

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