Hard Target (1993)

Genres - Action  |   Sub-Genres - Action Thriller, Chase Movie, Martial Arts  |   Release Date - Aug 20, 1993 (USA), Aug 20, 1993 (USA - Unknown)  |   Run Time - 97 min.  |   Countries - United States  |   MPAA Rating - R
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Review by Michael Costello

Switching from alter ego Chow Yun-Fat to Van Damme for his American debut, Woo goes from the sublime to the ridiculous, and while the film lacks the hard-edged focus of his best work, it has enough of the director's signature tricks to keep his fans happy. Another version of the oft-remade Richard Connell story, originally filmed as The Most Dangerous Game (1932), its dialogue seems to have been written with the star's limitations in mind, but his creative mangling of the Cajun accent will still leave many viewers begging for subtitles. The primitive story also lacks Woo's characteristic doppelganger theme, which would resurface in the superior Face/Off (1997) a few years later. Nonetheless, for those who are capable of appreciating Henriksen's demonic aristocrat as well as some vintage Woo set pieces, one in a Mardi Gras storage area, and another in a graveyard, the film is worth a look.