Running Red

  • 1999
  • Movie
  • R
  • Action, Crime, Martial Arts

Credit to second-string martial arts star Jeff Speakman for ringing new variations on an old action hero tune, playing a former Russian mercenary transplanted to Smalltown, USA with nary a trace of an accent. A flashback shows Russian Navy SEALS led by Alexi (Stanley Kamel) and Greg (Speakman) as they thwart a nerve-gas heist by international nogoodniks...read more

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Reviewed by Robert Pardi
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Credit to second-string martial arts star Jeff Speakman for ringing new variations on an old action hero tune, playing a former Russian mercenary transplanted to Smalltown, USA with nary a trace of an accent. A flashback shows Russian Navy SEALS led by Alexi (Stanley Kamel) and Greg (Speakman) as they thwart a nerve-gas heist by international nogoodniks Diaz (Geoffrey Rivas), Mercier (Bart Braverman) and Cheung (Peter Kwong). Years later, this mission impossible comes back to haunt defector Greg, who's built a new life as a Yank, complete with a wife, Katherine (Angie Everhart), and child, Amanda (Cassie Ray). Alexi, who has also started anew as an entrepreneur, discovers Greg's whereabouts and tells him that Diaz, Mercier and Cheung are once again a clear and present danger. But Alexi's story is a lie; he's actually planning a pre-emptive strike against anyone who can link him to his checkered past. Although Greg turns hitman for a day and brings about Diaz's demise, Alexi keeps upping the ante. In addition to having the crime triumvirate iced, Alexi now wants a local congressman assassinated because he stands in the way of a stadium deal that would be very beneficial to Alexi's bank balance. After Alexi bumps off Greg's neighbor and kidnaps Greg's family, Greg is caught in a terrible dilemma: Can he out-fox Alexi without sacrificing either his loved ones or the congressman? High-speed chases, death-by-locomotive and multiple slayings dot the landscape of this derivative but high-octane thriller that delivers plenty of kickboxing and explosive mayhem. But the acting is wooden (even by action-movie standards) and there are way too many screaming confrontations between the leads. However, your tolerance for this sort of grudge match against all things Russian may depend on how many similar exercises you've already seen.

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  • Released: 1999
  • Rating: R
  • Review: Credit to second-string martial arts star Jeff Speakman for ringing new variations on an old action hero tune, playing a former Russian mercenary transplanted to Smalltown, USA with nary a trace of an accent. A flashback shows Russian Navy SEALS led by Ale… (more)

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