What was mildly amusing over a decade ago when Guy Ritchie delivered us Jason Statham in Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels (1998) and Snatch (2000), has so outstayed its welcome it’s now become infuriating. And to be perfectly honest, I was already sick of him by Snatch.
Watching Jason Statham on-screen is like thumbing through Decor Magazine hung over. Watching Jason Statham trade lines in formula action movies is like sitting in the holding pen for two hours at the department of motor vehicles without your Kindle. Watching Jason Statham pretend to listen to other actors on-screen is like pretending you’re interested when a highway patrolman explains to you that your signature is not an admission of guilt. Watching Jason Statham hide behind sun glasses in various hoodies and windbreakers is like trying on khakis at the Gap and realizing you’re just buying cheap slacks. Watching Jason Statham pretend to be involved in a love story is like thinking you’re gonna discover a great novel at the Denver airport snack stand before you board. Watching Jason Statham drive around really really fast and do donuts in muscle cars is like trying to back out of a parking spot at the Trader Joes on LaBrea in an Escalade while two separate Prius drivers honk at you. Watching Jason Statham crinkle his forehead in disgust is like crinkling your own forehead in disgust with a seven-inch nail sticking in your eyeball. Watching Jason Statham walk into a scene and then lean against something and fold his arms is like watching Steve McQueen in the The Cincinnati Kid, except it’s not Steve McQueen it’s Jason Statham, and it’s not The Cincinnati Kid it’s some horrible movie you foolishly rented. Watching Jason Statham try to put on an American accent…oh wait, he’s yet to tackle that enormous acting challenge. Forget that one. Watching Jason Statham try to have a spontaneous on-screen moment that he probably didn’t do in every single take is like watching an ant try to lug a crust of sourdough across the kitchen floor. Watching a Jason Statham fight scene is like watching an employee at Best Buy try to collapse flat screen boxes and fit them into the dumpster behind the building. Watching Jason Statham carry on a meaningless plot point expositional conversation with his shirt unbuttoned and his perpetual five o’clock shadow is like having your best friend dump a pitcher of ice cold Sangria over your head while you’re on the phone with your mother. Watching a Jason Statham film and expecting it to be any good is like going to the gym in your flip flops and thinking you’re getting a work out.
I tried to watch Killer Elite last night and it took me all of 17 seconds to regret it.