The Rundown / Welcome to the Jungle  (2003)    67/100

Rating :   67/100                                                                     104 Min        15

A surprisingly fun action film with equally surprising audacity when it comes to the set pieces. Dwayne Johnson (or, ‘The Rock’ as he was billed as back then, before a transitory period of Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, and now just Dwayne Johnson) stars as a debt collector for a local personage who you do not want to get involved with, but he wants to get out of the racket. No problem, but he has to do one last job – go get his employer’s son, currently faffing around in the Amazon jungle (played by Seann William Scott) and drag him back home. Upon arrival he’ll meet the local hottie (Rosario Dawson), the gringo exploiting the land and its people (Christopher Walken) and realise that the son in question is actually looking for a rare, and thought to be lost forever, treasure, whereupon things get more complicated.

The fight scenes are good fun to watch, as pretty much everyone wants a piece of Johnson but he stoically refuses to use any firearms, instead relying on being awesome together with a little bit of wire fu. Some parts are just plain silly, and the editing is often borderline woeful – especially in the opening fight (which is immediately preceded by a cameo from Schwarzenegger just before he entered the world of politics, in an almost ‘passing of the baton’ moment with his real life friend Johnson) situated in a nightclub which has the worst excessive use of strobe lighting I’ve seen … well, ever I think, but armed with low expectations this can still be a little known, entertaining action frolic in the Brazilian rainforest.

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