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Alexsie Kutchinov: "We have a saying in my country - don't blame the baker, when the butcher bakes the bread." John Tuliver: "What the hell does that mean?" Alexsie Kutchinov: "It means you're fucked." If one glances at the cover for 7 Seconds, surely they'd notice the presence of Wesley Snipes and figure that with a veteran actor of that calibre, the film should be pretty good. However, if one erases the name of "Wesley Snipes" and replaced it with Steven Seagal, Van Damme or Chuck Norris there would be barely any difference at all. Just like Wesley Snipes' preceding low-budget films (he's probably bordering on 5-10 by now) this is merely another direct-to-DVD action vehicle featuring standard filmmaking in every aspect. The plot is dumb, the script is dumb, the action is dumb, the dialogue is dumb, and the film makes very little sense. Snipes' character is an interchangeable face holding a gun. There are no interesting character traits that Snipes is able to bring to the table. It seems these days, the formerly talented actor is spending his time in Romania getting fairly well paid to churn out generic, routine action films that exist to provide action geeks with something to chuckle over while wandering through the video store, searching for something to watch. 7 Seconds is shot on a cheap budget and is entirely overloaded with confusion: it's ostensibly a movie about one great thief, numerous dim-witted villains, and a very sexy British babe. Basically the director has no problem with displaying pointless action and violence throughout. When the movie isn't whooshing down a Romanian street or showcasing Wesley Snipes kickboxing feebly, we're strained to suffer through incessant reams of screenplay jabber that's not even dreadful enough to be amusing. You won't care who successfully escapes with what and/or who finishes up double-crossing whom. Ergo the chases, getaways, and butt-kickings never seem to matter very much. It brings me no pleasure to announce that this is another nail in the coffin containing Snipes' career: 7 Seconds feels like nothing more than a project featuring Snipes merely because Van Damme was feeling too lazy one week. The film's almost non-existent plot appears to concern an allegedly hard-nosed-yet-charming master thief named Jack Tuliver (Snipes). Of course he was formally in the army and, in the typical clichd manner, was honourably discharged. Jack is leading a supposedly foolproof, precisely timed armoured car heist. Instead he ends up stealing a case that (I think) contains a missing Van Gogh painting. Then another gang turns up and briskly eliminates Jack's men. Then Jack's girl is kidnapped and he has to rescue her. Somewhere in here, a British army Sergeant (Outhwaite) gets mixed up and decides to help Jack. Okay, so 7 Seconds is a pretty appalling film. Its only redeeming feature is the action. The car chases and shoot-outs are competently made and don't look too low-budget. Still, director Simon Fellows appears to stick close to the fast-cutting Michael Bay style. The story doesn't make a lick of sense and is full of incredible coincidences. The film offers a few twists and turns, but most of them are seemingly superfluous. Another thing that will stick out about 7 Seconds is the enormous amount of flashbacks. I wouldn't by lying if I said the film would have been an hour long (or less) if the flashbacks were cut. We're endlessly spoon fed flashbacks to remind us of faces and things people have done. Surprisingly, even they cannot add more coherence to the flick. 90% of the time I didn't even know what the flashbacks were pertaining to (they constantly replay a clip of some random guy delivering a Wizard of Oz reference and then getting shot). The acting is very standard throughout the film. The script attempts to insert running gags, but they will never have you laughing. The biggest insult is the villain with Parkinson's disease that is obviously making himself shake. It all looks contrived. Also, the sound foley during the action is generally appalling! Overflowing with mountains of corny dialogue, pointless acts of violence, futile flashbacks, senseless editing and a poor directorial style - one can only describe 7 Seconds as pure crap. It's disappointing to see Wesley Snipes transforming into a direct-to-video king like Seagal and Van Damme before him.
- PvtCaboose91, Sunday, July 13, 2008