REVIEW: The Marine 4 – Moving Target (2015)

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2015, 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment/WWE Studios

Director:
William Kaufman
Producer:
Michael S. Luisi
Writer:
Scott Wiper (original characters)
Declan O’Brien (original characters)
Alan McElroy (screenplay)
Cinematography:
Mark Rutledge
Editing:
Paul Martin Smith

Cast:
Mike Mizanin (Jake Carter)
Melissa Roxburgh (Olivia Tanis)
Josh Blacker (Andrew Vogel)
Matthew MacCaull (Ethan Smith)
Danielle Moinet (Rachel Dawes)
Paul McGillion (Det. Paul Redman)

Jake Carter, the hero of The Marine 3: Homefront, is back with a new job, new assignment, but must use his same old skills when he’s faced with a new threat.

After rescuing his sister from an international terrorist, Jake Carter is now living a solitary life in the wilderness. He has a new job as a private security agent. His first mission is to be a bodyguard for Olivia Tanis, a young woman who has become a whistleblower against a top weapons manufacturer, Genesis. A former IT worker for the company, Olivia has evidence that could pose a serious threat to the company.

To prevent Olivia from reaching the Justice Department, the company has hired South African mercenary Andrew Vogel to “eliminate the target”. When Carter and his team are ambushed en route to a private cabin, where the agents are to safekeep Olivia, Carter and practically all but two fellow agents escape along with Olivia, who turns out to more than she can chew being an arrogant no-good spoiled brat. However, as Carter plans to continue doing his job, he learns the truth about why she is a target and must find a plan to make sure Olivia is safe at all costs.

The latest installment in the WWE-starred series is actually a pretty good straight-to-DVD thriller that for the first time in the series, brings back the character of Jake Carter. While John Cena became the first, Ted DiBiase Jr’s sequel was not too thrilling. However, when Mike “The Miz” Mizanin took over for the third film as Jake Carter, the threequel proved to be more exciting all in part to its cast and action scenes.  With that installment doing well, it was apparent fans may not like the heel turn of “The Miz”, but they sure see him as an ample action hero thus it was only evident that Mizanin had to return as Jake Carter for the latest installment.

Mizanin may not exactly be the greatest actor in the world, but as a straight-to-DVD action hero, he pulls it off well enough to carry the film. While he went for straightforward firepower and some hand to hand combat in the last installment (including a short but sweet fight against the late Darren Shahlavi), here, Carter relies on not only that, but his survival skills in the climax.

The supporting cast, notably Melissa Roxburgh and Josh Blacker, help drive the film. Roxburgh plays Olivia as a spoiled brat but one for good reason: she has been betrayed so much she can’t trust anyone. One knows where this ends up minus the romantic element. As for Josh Blacker, he pulls it off as the menacing Vogel, who is hired to eliminate the target at any costs, despite orders from the tratorious agent Smith, played by Matthew MacCaull. As for Danielle Moinet, also known as WWE diva Summer Rae, she doesn’t offer much but act as a background player despite her appearance on the artwork.

The action set pieces are okay for a straight-to-DVD film. While there’s loads of firepower in the film, Mizanin gets himself in two close-quarter fight scenes, one with MacCaull and a shorter one against Moinet. Fight choreographer Dan Rizzuto does a good job using the environment in terms of how to not only depict the close quarter combat scenes, but in the case of the first fight, use anything for Mizanin and MacCaull to employ as a weapon. The battle of the Miz against the WWE DIva though? Could have been longer.

The Marine 4: Moving Target is actually a pretty decent installment to the film series, but it does have its flaws. It ranks up there with the previous installment, a far improvement from the second film. At this rate, if there is a fifth one, it’s safe to say, bring back Mike Mizanin as Jake Carter for another round of mayhem…and that’s exactly what is happening this year.

WFG RATING: B-

DVD

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