Death Race

Jason Statham  Actor Tyrese Gibson  Actor Ian McShane  Actor Joan Allen  Actor Natalie Martinez  Actor

R

MPAA Rating: R
Contains:Violence,Profanity

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Death Race

Theatrical Release Date: 2008 08 22 (USA)

UPC: 025195056601

Studio: Universal Studios

MPAA Rating: R   Contains:[Violence, Profanity]

Summary: The Transporter star Jason Statham takes the wheel in director Paul W.S. Anderson's remake of the Roger Corman classic about a hyper-violent cross-country race that breaks all of the traditional rules of the road. The time is the not-so-distant future, and as America's prisons begin overflowing with violent criminals, the powers that be devise a grisly game that will free up space in the cells and entertain the masses at the same time. Jensen Ames (Statham) is a three-time speedway champion with a dark past. A survival expert and ex-con whose sordid history comes back to haunt him when he is framed for a murder he didn't commit, Ames is forced to choose between donning the metallic mask of a mythical racer known as Frankenstein or languishing away on Terminal Island -- America's most notorious penitentiary. Over the course of the next three days, this unlikely champion will get behind the wheel of a nightmare machine outfitted with machine guns, grenade launchers, and flamethrowers in a desperate attempt to outrun some of the most violent criminals ever imprisoned. Should Ames be the first to cross the checkered flag, he will win his freedom; should he come in second, however, death would be preferable to a grim future in a cramped concrete cell. Co-stars include Joan Allen, Ian McShane, Natalie Martinez, and Tyrese Gibson, who takes over the role of Machine Gun Joe, made famous by Sylvester Stallone in the original. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovi

Category: Science Fiction

Features: Start your Engines: Making a Death Race

Behind the Wheel: Dissecting the Stunts
Feature Commentary with Director Paul W. Anderson and Producer Jeremy Bolt (Unrated Version Only)

Death Race

Format: DVD

Release Date: 12/21/2008

Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Cinemascope

Audio: DD5.1 Dolby Digital 5.1, DD2 Dolby Digital Stereo

Runtime: 60 Minutes

Sides: 1

Number of Discs: 1

Language(s) English,Spanish,French

Subtitles: English,Spanish,French

Region: USA & territories, Canada

Chapters: Disc #1 -- Death Race
1. Killer Competition [4:10]
2. Honest Living (Main Titles) [4:11]
3. Behind Bars [:51]
4. Never a Dull Day [3:00]
5. Keep the Legend Alive [1:25]
6. Getting Acquainted [2:23]
7. Stage 1 [:03]
8. Start Transmission [3:11]
9. Activate Swords & Shields [:07]
10. Play My Game [:29]
11. Looking for Me? [3:16]
12. Stage 2 [1:01]
13. On the Offense [:07]
14. Release the Dreadnought [3:57]
15. Stage 3 [:46]
16. A Little Inspiration [1:02]
17. It's Party Time [:30]
18. Off Track [2:26]
19. All That Matters [4:09]
20. End Titles [6:20]
1. Killer Competition [4:10]
2. Honest Living (Main Titles) [4:11]
3. Behind Bars [:36]
4. Never a Dull Day [3:00]
5. Keep the Legend Alive [1:25]
6. Getting Acquainted [1:15]
7. Stage 1 [:03]
8. Start Transmission [3:11]
9. Activate Swords & Shields [:04]
10. Play My Game [:03]
11. Looking for Me? [3:16]
12. Stage 2 [:31]
13. On the Offense [:07]
14. Release the Dreadnought [3:57]
15. Stage 3 [:22]
16. A Little Inspiration [1:02]
17. It's Party Time [:24]
18. Off Track [2:26]
19. All That Matters [4:09]
20. End Titles [6:20]

Jeremy Wheeler

Witless and headache inducing, Paul W.S. Andersonís Death Race is a torturous big screen boxing glove of a flick that punishes all who dare come near. As an adaptation of Roger Cormanís thoroughly outrageous cult film forefather, Death Race 2000, this annoying reimagining is a colossal failure that seems unable to comprehend what was so special about the originalís mix of colorful characters, wild production design and scathing social satire. Even based on its own merits, Death Race is still a mess. Embracing much of the genreís filmmaking gaffs was the productionís first mistake. Filmed with what seems like a camera mounted to a bobble head, the hyped-up peddle-to-the-meddle flick disorients its audience at every dizzying turn. The film also forgoes any thought put into distinguishing its racers thanks to poorly sketched out characters and some drearily similar car designs. Packed with videogame logic (buttons on the racetrack to trigger weapons) and paced to the speed of a snail when itís not sending out seizure-inducing images, this is one macho turd that, like another franchise it so desperately wants to be, will likely be fast and furiously forgotten about long before the checkered flag is waived.

Itís not as if Andersonís track record promised greatness (his last film before this was Alien Vs. Predator for cryiní out loud) -- yet here is a prepackaged idea that is so entirely ripe for mining in its day and age that it boggles the mind as to why the picture was taken in this bland direction. So much could be done with the story of a society feeding off of a game of death, yet the virtuo-dodo filmmaker strips the flick to its most generic and even goes as far as to axe the pedestrian deaths angle -- leaving only room for muscles, metal and a whole lot of manure. The actors arenít quite to blame -- Jason Statham brings the same cold cool that makes him him, just as Ian McShane and Joan Allen effortlessly embody the mentor and villain roles, respectively. The problem stems from the fact that the cast is given so little to work with. Virtually every character is there simply to fill this or that dull moment before itís time for another grinding scene of mind-numbing mayhem to move the movie along. All of this would be different if the flick had any sense of humor -- or dare it be said, be a tad more inept. As it is now, Death Race is a 105-minute empty shell of noise and manic movement made to cash in on the members of society that the original was sending up. Maybe Paul Bartel and Corman were right -- if so, then thereís plenty of room for this tale to be retold with even more Verhoeven-esque bite to its violence and satire -- or just leave it be. It was just fine the first time, kids. ~ Jeremy Wheeler, All Movie Guide

Cast and Crew: Paul W.S. Anderson  Director 
Paul W.S. Anderson  Producer 
Paul W.S. Anderson  Screenwriter 
Roger Corman  Executive Producer 
Dennis E. Jones  Executive Producer 
Paula Wagner  Producer 
Jeremy Bolt  Producer 
Paul Haslinger  Composer (Music Score) 
Don Granger  Executive Producer 
Ryan Kavanaugh  Executive Producer 
Jason Statham  Actor 
Tyrese Gibson  Actor 
Ian McShane  Actor 
Joan Allen  Actor 
Natalie Martinez  Actor 
Max Ryan  Actor 
Jason Clarke  Actor 
Fred Koehler  Actor 
Jacob Vargas  Actor 
Justin Mader  Actor 
Robert La Sardo  Actor 
Robin Shou  Actor 
Janaya Stephens  Actor 

Country: USA