“Wow, this has to be one of the worst movie watching experiences ever. But it had zero to do with the movie itself. The movie was fine, but I’ve never felt so uncomfortable in a movie theater.

I walk into the auditorium just as the last pre-preview is wrapping up. It’s fairly packed, but there’s a few extra seats at the end of the first row of the main section. I walk over and the guy sitting in the handicap seats in front smells like he hasn’t showered in a while. I move over one, leaving the aisle seat on one side of me and two empties on the other. As the first preview is wrapping up, somebody takes the aisle seat. I debate what’s more awkward: staying in the current seating configuration or conspicously moving over so I have a buffer seat on either side. I made the poor choice of staying put. As the previews are finishing, two big burly guys with backpacks pile in to those seats. Dude now to my right smells like the guy in front of me. He starts fishing into his backpack, and in a post-Aurora world I have a minor internal panic attack (guy to my left had also shown up with big backpack). What he pulls out is a bottle in a plastic bag. The smell coming from that overpowers his BO, so there’s no denying what it is. Srsly? In the front row? Well front if you don’t count the front section (cause really, who does?). Zero discretion whatsoever. At this point, the movie’s starting and the theater has filled up, so I’m kinda stuck where I am. As we’re watching, the girl behind left side guy is apparently kicking his seat, so he has to tell her several times to stop. And there was a constant buzz of noise coming from her chattering. The more the movie progresses, the more right side dude and his buddy drink, and they start talking back at the screen. Before long, he’s too far gone to respect the edge of seat boundaries. His elbow isn’t on the armrest between us. Oh no, it’s all the way over in my seat as the middle of is forearm is what’s across it. I couldn’t wait to get out of there.

The movie wasn’t bad. Not something I’m likely to be thinking about by next month, but it was entertaining. I’ll follow Jason Statham to pretty much anything. This has long since been established. He just got this finese to his tough guy side. It was great to see him bringing some of his creative fighting moves, even if there wasn’t as much action as I’d like. When it started, I was thinking about how Statham always manages to get away with his accent even when he’s playing an American character. Parker proved why that is. He tried putting on a southern accent for a little bit. Thankfully for his character over the top was acceptable because damn. Those sounds should never come out of that man’s mouth again. He can keep his free pass on the accent.

It took me a little while to be sold on Jennifer Lopez. It’s not that she annoyed me, it’s that it took me a while to understand her purpose. We meet her way down the line and Statham’s Parker already has a girl. So she’s only sorta trying to recreate Out of Sight? It just seemed strange. Parker gets along for a really long time without her. Then again, the addition of her character lightens up the mood a lot, thus making it slightly stand out from your typical Jason Statham flick.

One thing that was unaccpetable, however, was the bad editing in some places. There were at least three scenes that I noticed where you’d have a wide shot of somebody talking, and their lips were nowhere close to matching up with voice. Did they just think no one would notice? Luckily I was into the movie eough that it didn’t kill the whole thing for me, but still, very sloppy.

There was a really happy surprise with the supporting cast. Bobby Cannavale had a small role as a cop friend of J.Lo’s. However, the real scene stealer and greatest surprise was Patti Lupone as J.Lo’s mom. Yes, that Patti Lupone, legend of the Broadway stage. It took a couple scenes to get used to her, but she turned out to be hilarious, and she also brought a lot of heart to the film. Honestly, she is the last person I’d ever expect to see sharing the screen with Statham, but it’s also the pairing I never knew I wanted so much.

Parker – \m/ \m/ \m/

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