Here’s ‘The Rundown’: This movie is nothing new |

Here’s ‘The Rundown’: This movie is nothing new

Adults watching “The Rundown” can wile 100 minutes cataloging spare parts. Been here, done this, usually in better company.

Recognize the menacing monkeys (“The Wizard of Oz”)• How about the jungle trek for a long-hidden treasure (“King Solomon’s Mines” and “Raiders of the Lost Ark” among the dozens)• And that valuable statue• Right out of “The Maltese Falcon.”

Ever met the white expatriate despot holed up in an exotic land where he has enslaved — or mesmerized — the natives•

Just in case anyone doesn’t recognize it as Joseph Conrad’s “Heart of Darkness,” already adapted well enough into “Apocalypse Now,” “The Rundown” gives Christopher Walken (as a Kurtz figure named Hatcher) a final line: “I am a heart in the darkness.” Got it.

Dwayne Johnson, a pro wrestler who caught on under the moniker The Rock, bills himself accordingly in pictures such as “The Mummy Returns” and “The Scorpion King.”

He plays here “a retrieval expert” and reluctant enforcer named Beck who takes on “the entire offensive line” of a football team and all other armies single-handed.

To liquidate his employment for a thug, he agrees to retrieve the thug’s cocky-without-a-cause son Travis (Seann William Scott) from the Amazon jungle.

Travis doesn’t intend to leave the Amazon without the statue, which is also of interest to the gold-mining eccentric Hatcher.

The moment you meet the barmaid Mariana (Rosario Dawson), you know she has an inner warrior, a Lara Croft-style machismo that will make her the same old She-Man.

At least the screenplay by R.J. Stewart and James Vanderbilt is directed more than competently by Peter Beck.

It has one scene that explains Oscar-winner Walken’s involvement — he tries to explain the concept of the tooth fairy through a translator — two that are moderately amusing involving hallucinogenic fruit, and one that will have kids doubled up (Travis, handcuffed-behind-his-back, negotiates to relieve himself).

Mostly, “The Rundown” numbs with its cartoonish crutches: super-human stunts, explosions and invulnerable heroes. Will Hollywood never learn that heroes who can’t be hurt rob us of a rooting interest•

Additional Information:

Movie Details

‘The Rundown’

Director: Peter Berg.

Stars: The Rock, Seann William Scott, Christopher Walken.

MPAA rating: PG-13 for adventure violence and some crude dialogue.


TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.