Wild Card is a neo-noir film starring Jason Statham and directed by Simon West. West seems to be the go to director for a remake these days. This is a remake of Heat starring Burt Reynolds. I have not seen this film so I can not compare it to this updated version. This is also the first screenplay from William Goldman in over 11 years. This is also based on Goldman’s novel. Goldman is one hell of a writer and has written many classic books as well as written screenplays for his and other great authors works.
This story takes place in Las Vegas where Statham plays Nick Wild. Wild is a classic hardboiled muscle for hire. We never really learn about his past, but hints throughout the film lead us to believe it was pretty epic. The first part of this film is a little case he takes where he plays the bad guy trying to pick up a guy’s girlfriend in a bar. If you seen the trailer you already know about this. He basically takes a fall to make the girlfriend look up to and fall in love with her boyfriend. Then we get a call from a girl who asks Wild for his help. He looks into it a little and realizes this is way over his head and does not want to get involved. Our beat-up femme fatale is played very well by Dominik Garcia-Lorido. She sucks Wild into the case and he knows this will not end good. Our bad guy who needs taken care of, for our femme fatale is played by Milo Ventimiglia. He does very well as the spoiled rich kid with a bad attitude.
Wild is a hard drinker who likes to gamble and isn’t very good at it. He is very self-destructive and this may be his downfall in the end. The cinematography has some great noir style throughout the film.
This film has a ton of little parts played by pretty big actors, with the likes of Hope Davis, Michael Angarano, Stanley Tucci, Jason Alexander, Sofía Vergara, and Anne Heche.
This film has not been well received by critics or the film going public and I’m not sure really why? I rather enjoyed this film, though it starts out pretty slow and the action doesn’t really get started until the last 30 minutes or so. I can see why people wanting a Jason Statham action film would have got to bored with the story before the action got good for them. I rather liked the slow build up to our hero’s destiny. I think if you are a neo-noir fan or noir fan, you will find this a very good film well worth your time.